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Staff Biography

Research Associate - Education and Skills, Wellbeing
Room/Desk: 32L 2.08  
University of Surrey
Tel: 01483 682770
Email: j.blanden@surrey.ac.uk

Curriculum Vitae PDF  Personal WebSite WWW

Expertise: Intergenerational mobility; impact of parental income on education; British Cohort data; social mobility and home ownership, migrant doctors and the impact of nursery attendance on children's outcomes.


Jo Blanden graduated from the University of East Anglia in 1998; she then studied for a Masters degree in Economics at University College London. From 2000 to 2005 she was a full-time researcher in the Centre for Economic Performance (CEP) at the London School of Economics and completed her PhD at UCL over this time. She joined the Department of Economics at Surrey in October 2005 and is a Visiting Fellow at the LSE.

Current Areas of Research:

Jo's research interests lie broadly in the fields of labour and family economics. Jo's PhD was on the topic of intergenerational income mobility. Her work with Paul Gregg and Steve Machin on 'Changes in Intergenerational Mobility in Britain' found that the relationship between family income and children's adult earnings has strengthened for those born in 1970 compared to those born in 1958; this finding has attracted a large amount of policy and media interest. Jo's recent paper with Stephen Machin (January 2017), on 'Home Ownership and Social Mobility' found that home ownership rates have fallen rapidly. For individuals born in 1970 home ownership rates shrunk disproportionately for those whose parents were not home owners when they were children. These results reinforce a picture of falling social mobility in Britain.

Jo has continued to write about intergenerational mobility. She has published work on international comparisons and on how using different measures of mobility changes conclusions. In addition she has looked at how obtaining qualifications in adulthood affects individuals' earnings. Recent work with Lindsey Macmillan seeks to understand how social mobility is affected by educational expansion. Her current projects continue to explore the topic of social mobility in the UK, with joint work with Lindsey Macmillan, Paul Gregg, Luke Sibieta and Ellen Greaves seeking to understand the impressive school performance of children in London, especially for those from disadvantaged backgrounds. She has a research grant to look at the impact of nursery attendance on children's outcomes (with Sandra McNally and Kirstine Hansen) which is now part of a larger collaboration with Birgitta Rabe and Emilia Del Bono. This work indicates that the £2bn a year invested in part-time early education appears to have quite small educational benefits.


  • BA Economics, University of East Anglia, 1995-1998
  • MSc Economics, University College London, 1998-1999
  • PhD Economics, University College London, 2000-2005

Affiliations/Professional activities with other institutions:

  • University of Surrey - Senior Lecturer in Economics and Research Director of the School of Economics

Selected Publications:

See also Publications on LSE Research Online book
  • Blanden, J., A. Goodman, P.Gregg and S.Machin (2004) "Changes in Intergenerational Mobility in Britain" in Corak, M. (ed.) "Generational Income Inequality", Cambridge University Press.

  • Blanden, J. and S. Machin (2004) 'Educational Inequality and the Expansion of UK Higher Education' Scottish Journal of Political Economy, Vol. 51, pp. 230-249.

  • Blanden, J. and S. Machin (2004) 'Educational Inequality and the Expansion of UK Higher Education' Scottish Journal of Political Economy, Vol. 51, pp. 230-249.

CEP Publications: