SOEPpapers on Multidisciplinary Panel Data Research 561
The purpose of this paper is to assess if parents exert an influence on the occupation choices of their children. Using data from the German Socioeconomic Panel (SOEP), we find a high persistency of occupational decisions across fathers and children using nested and conditional logit models. To separate effects related to genetic factors (nature) and parental education or role models (nurture), we determine the persistency separately for children who grew up with their biological fathers and for those who did not. Our results suggest that especially nurture plays a decisive role in explaining the choice of one's occupation.