Archbridge Insider October 2018

Which Structural Factors are Influencing Economic Mobility?

In a new report, Archbridge President and CEO Gonzalo Schwarz challenges the conventional wisdom on income inequality and economic mobility. Though the two seem to be connected, no causal relationship has been established. Using cross-national data on structural factors such as corruption and business climates, Schwarz makes the case that researchers should examine the structural factors that may be influencing both phenomena.

Read the Full Report: “The Importance of Structural Factors in Understanding Economic Mobility”

Archbridge Institute Welcomes Leading Scholars to Its Academic Board

The Archbridge Institute is pleased to welcome Dr. James Heckman and Dr. Steven Durlauf, two stellar academics and leading scholars in the field of social mobility, to our Board of Academic Advisers as Senior Fellows. In our mission to lift barriers to human flourishing, we are very excited to collaborate with them in working towards a consensus on the primary barriers to human flourishing and social mobility. Read the full announcement here.

Archbridge Institute Commentary

Writing in The Hill, Economics Professor and Nobel Laureate James Heckman and Archbridge President and CEO Gonzalo Schwarz, discuss the state of economic mobility research. Dismayed by the omission of previous academic findings in a recent Equality of Opportunity Project study (and its coverage in the media), Heckman and Schwarz highlight the importance of seeking consilience with previous research conclusions.


American Originals: General Robert Wood

Before there was Amazon, there was Sears, Roebuck, using the mail-order catalog where the Internet is used today. Before Walmart was the world’s largest retailer (and company of any type), there was Sears, Roebuck, in its glory days by far the largest retailer on earth. Few know the real story behind the two visionaries who made Sears great—neither of whom was named Sears or Roebuck. This is the story of the greatest of them, General Robert Elkington Wood, who shaped so many things about America and the world.

General Robert Wood: The Forgotten Man Who Changed Sears and the World

Mobility News

Future of Jobs Report 2018
The World Economic Forum is out with a comprehensive new report on the future of jobs. The report details ways in which technology is changing (and will change) the way in which we work and how the nature of jobs is shifting with the “Fourth Industrial Revolution.”




New Census Opportunity AtlasIs There a Sequence for Success?
Census Bureau researchers Sonya R. Porter and Maggie R. Jones are out with a new study that reports social mobility by census tract. The data explores how different neighborhoods can affect a child’s future earnings.




A Broken Social Elevator? How to Promote Social Mobility
Researchers at the OECD are out with a new report that provides evidence on social mobility in the context of increased inequalities of income and opportunities in OECD and selected emerging economies.




California’s Two Strikes Against Economic Opportunity
Ben Wilterdink, Archbridge Institute Director of Programs, explores how the California Legislature recently missed two opportunities to boost economic mobility in recent post on Medium.



Thank you for reading the newest edition of our Archbridge Insider. As you can see, it has been a busy summer for us even as we’ve taken a summer hiatus from the Insider. I hope you enjoy reading our newest report and I welcome all of your comments. Because there exists a multitude of topics to research in the mobility/inequality literature, some relevant topics risk being overlooked. My newest report is an attempt to broaden the conversation and discuss topics that are not as thoroughly researched in the academic literature.

I was pleased to collaborate with Nobel Laureate Dr. James Heckman on our op-ed emphasizing the need to seek consilience with the social mobility literature by looking at all the facts and relevant data in the debate. I’m pleased that Archbridge will get a chance to work more with Dr. Heckman and the exceptional Steven Durlauf in the months to come.

Finally, don’t forget to read our newest American Originals on the story of General Robert E Wood. Sears has been in the news lately for all the wrong reasons, facing layoffs and restructuring. But we shouldn’t forget a great man who planted the seed for their success in previous decades.

Thank you for following our work and our mission to lift barriers to human flourishing.

Best regards,
Gonzalo Schwarz
President and CEO

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