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Teodora Boneva (UCL): “Parental Beliefs about Returns to Educational Investments – The Later the Better?”

The next meeting of BeNA in Summer Semester 2016 is taking place on Wednesday, July 6th, 6.15-7.45 pm at Humboldt University, Room 22.

We are glad to welcome Teodora Boneva (University College London) who will present her paper “Parental Beliefs about Returns to Educational Investments – The Later the Better?”. Please see the abstract below. After the meeting we are all going out for a dinner. Everyone is welcome to join.

We would also like to encourage you to talk with Teodora about your research. In order to set up an appointment, please pick a time slot via Doodle. The office hour will take place at Humboldt University, Room 101. For further information, please contact Felix Weinhardt (

For all upcoming talks in the summer term have a look at the semester program.

Abstract “Parental Beliefs about Returns to Educational Investments – The Later the Better?”

In this paper, we study parental beliefs about the technology which maps parental investments into future child outcomes. We document that parents perceive late investments as more productive than early investments, and that they perceive investments in different time periods as substitutes. These beliefs contrast with findings in the empirical literature which suggest that early investments are more efficient and are complementary to late investments. We show that parental beliefs about the returns to investments vary substantially across the population and that individual beliefs are predictive of actual investment decisions. Moreover, we document that parental beliefs about the productivity of investments differ significantly across socio-economic groups. Perceived returns to parental investments are positively related to household income, thereby potentially contributing to inter-generational earnings persistence.