Unemployment: long-lasting effect on children

Parental unemployment represents a major financial, social, and psychological burden for the entire family. In fact, it is remarkable how long and how strongly children are affected by unemployment. An analysis of study data shows that if, for example, the father of children between the ages of 6 and 9 is unemployed, they are 30 percent less likely to finish school later with a (technical) high school diploma. They are also less likely to graduate from university.

Despite the large time gap between primary school age and the last school-leaving certificate, the children’s educational path is strongly influenced by their parents’ unemployment. “It therefore stands to reason that the intergenerational consequences of unemployment are long-lasting, intensify over the years, and thus persist into adulthood,” says Prof. Dr. Felix Weinhardt from DIW Berlin, “Children must receive more support in order to avoid the long-term effects of parental unemployment.” Currently, however, children’s educational success still depends highly on their parental home.

Further information

DIW Berlin (Deutsches Institut für Wirtschaftsforschung): Arbeitslosigkeit der Eltern von Grundschulkindern beeinträchtigt deren Bildungserfolg nachhaltig

All results in the overview

Image by Taylor Flowe from Unsplash