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CEP discussion paper
The Transferable Scars: A Longitudinal Evidence of Psychological Impact of Past Parental Unemployment on Adolescents in the United Kingdom
Nattavudh Powdthavee and James Vernoit September 2012
Paper No' CEPDP1165:
Full Paper (pdf)

JEL Classification: D1; I3; J6

Tags: unemployment; scarring; children; happiness; self-esteem; noncognitive skills

Using a longitudinal data of British youths, this paper explores the consequences of past parental unemployment on the current happiness and self-esteem of the children. We find that a past unemployment spell of the father has important consequences for their children and leads to them having both lower subjective well-being and self-confidence. In addition, this paper also presents evidence that both subjective well-being and self-confidence responds differently to maternal unemployment compared to paternal unemployment. In our final table, we show changes in adolescents’ well-being and self-esteem predicts educational attainments at 16. Together these findings offer new evidence of unemployment scarring on children’s livelihood.

This paper has been published as:
What childhood characteristics predict psychological resilience to economic shocks in adulthood?, Nattavudh Powdthavee, Journal of Economic Psychology, Volume 45, December 201