HealthLawProf Blog

Editor: Katharine Van Tassel
Case Western Reserve University School of Law

Saturday, March 12, 2005

Elder Siblings

A new study from Norway confirms what most of the elder-born children in the world already know, birth order matters.  Reuters reports that the study demonstrates,

“It is the birth order and not necessarily the size of the family that is important,” said economics professor Kjell Salvanes of the Norwegian School of Economics and Business Administration. “It is better if you are the first born.” Salvanes and two colleagues from the University of California, Los Angeles based their study on census data of Norwegians born between 1912 and 1975.

. . . .

They found that younger siblings tend to get less schooling than their elders and then end up with lower pay on average and were more likely to be in part-time work, Salvanes said. The findings were likely to hold true in other countries, he said.

The complete findings from the study will appear in the Quarterly Journal of Economics, a Harvard publication, in May.  To my own lovely and talented little sister, I can only beg her forgiveness for hogging the educational opportunities.  [bm]

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