Over the last 40 years, class divides—by household income and by parental educational attainment—in how parents spend time and money on children have widened considerably. This suggests that the rise in income inequality may be causally related to the growing class divide in parental investments. However, scholars have yet to test the empirical relationship between income inequality and class gaps in parental investment or to investigate the pathways associated with their relationship.
Sociologist Daniel Schneider will examine the relationship between income inequality and gaps in parental expenditures on children by household income rank. He will merge thirty years of microdata from the Consumer Expenditure Survey on parental expenditures on children with state-level measures of income inequality from the Internal Revenue Service and Census.