Parents' preferences for their children's education and career paths

Last registered on February 22, 2024


Trial Information

General Information

Parents' preferences for their children's education and career paths
Initial registration date
August 14, 2023

Initial registration date is when the trial was registered.

It corresponds to when the registration was submitted to the Registry to be reviewed for publication.

First published
August 16, 2023, 11:17 AM EDT

First published corresponds to when the trial was first made public on the Registry after being reviewed.

Last updated
February 22, 2024, 5:57 AM EST

Last updated is the most recent time when changes to the trial's registration were published.


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Primary Investigator

University of Bern

Other Primary Investigator(s)

PI Affiliation
Swiss Coordination Centre for Research in Education, University of Lucerne
PI Affiliation
University of Bern, Swiss Coordination Centre for Research in Education

Additional Trial Information

In development
Start date
End date
Secondary IDs
Prior work
This trial does not extend or rely on any prior RCTs.
We study the preferences of adults for their hypothetical child’s educational and career paths. For that purpose, we implement a discrete choice experiment among a representative survey of 6000 adults aged between 25 and 60 in Switzerland where we ask them in multiple choice situations which of two “careers” they would prefer for their child. These careers are defined by the highest educational attainment, wage, the hierarchical position in their job, and the risk that their job will be substituted within the next 10 years. We ask half of the survey sample about their preferences for their hypothetical daughter, and the other half about preferences for their hypothetical son. We investigate how career attributes affect the likelihood of a career being chosen, how these preferences for career attributes vary depending on whether respondents are asked about their hypothetical daughter or son, and whether preferences depend on respondent characteristics.
External Link(s)

Registration Citation

Cattaneo, Maria, Christian Gschwendt and Stefan C. Wolter. 2024. "Parents' preferences for their children's education and career paths." AEA RCT Registry. February 22.
Experimental Details


No intervention planned.
Intervention Start Date
Intervention End Date

Primary Outcomes

Primary Outcomes (end points)
The primary dependent variable is the choice variable of an alternative (the “child’s career”) being chosen in the discrete choice experiment among two alternatives with four attributes each. The variable takes the value 1 for the chosen alternative and 0 for the alternative that was not chosen.
Primary Outcomes (explanation)

Secondary Outcomes

Secondary Outcomes (end points)
Our mixed multinominal logit model allows for the estimation of heterogeneous preferences among respondents. Therefore, preference heterogeneity will be investigated depending on respondent characteristics, such as sex, age, education, language region, political orientation, migration background, field of occupation, or whether respondents have children of their own or not.
Secondary Outcomes (explanation)

Experimental Design

Experimental Design
We examine a discrete choice experiment that is embedded into an online survey of 6000 adults between the age of 25 and 60 in Switzerland. The respondents are asked about their preferences for their hypothetical daughter’s or son’s career.
Experimental Design Details
Not available
Randomization Method
Respondents are assigned to the subsamples by stratified random sampling based on respondent sex, age, and language region by computer.
Randomization Unit
Was the treatment clustered?

Experiment Characteristics

Sample size: planned number of clusters
No clustering.
Sample size: planned number of observations
Sample size (or number of clusters) by treatment arms
3000 are asked about their hypothetical daughter, 3000 are asked about their hypothetical son
Minimum detectable effect size for main outcomes (accounting for sample design and clustering)

Institutional Review Boards (IRBs)

IRB Name
University of Bern Ethics Committee
IRB Approval Date
IRB Approval Number