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Lindsey Macmillan

Lindsey Macmillan

Research Fellow

Lindsey is Associate Professor of Economics and the Centre Head of Quantitative Social Science in Department of Social Science, UCL Institute of Education. As a trained economist, her research interests focus on intergenerational transmissions, including intergenerational income mobility and intergenerational joblessness. Her previous research has considered the role of cognitive and non-cognitive skills, education and labour market experience in the transmission of income and work across generations. She has written a number of papers relating to educational inequalities including the impact of selective schooling systems on social mobility, understanding the improved performance of London pupils, and the characteristics and outcomes of those who undermatch in higher education. She also has a keen interest in the role of family background in access and progression within top professional jobs. Alongside her academic publications, Lindsey works closely with government and third sector organisations including the Social Mobility Commission.

She is currently PI on two ESRC grants: a Future Research Leader's grant, investigating intergenerational joblessness in an international context, and a Standard Research Grant examining intergenerational income mobility for women in the UK. She is also CI on a Nuffield Foundation grant on undermatch in higher education. From May 2019 she will be CI on a Nuffield Foundation grant on subject and qualification choices 16-19 and university outcomes. Alongside her funded projects, she is carrying out research considering parental investments and child outcomes, and working with a number of professional services firms to analyse the SES composition of their applications data.

Lindsey is a Research Fellow in the Education and Skills sector at the Institute for Fiscal Studies, and a Visiting Senior Research Fellow at the Centre for Analysis of Social Exclusion at London School of Economics.

Academic outputs

IFS Working Paper W22/26
We spotlight some of the newer directions in intergenerational mobility research within economics driven by changes in some key trends in the recent decades, as well as growing availability of administrative data.
IFS Working Paper W22/23
We use newly linked UK administrative to estimate absolute income mobility for children born in England in the 1980s.

Reports and comment

External publication
A socially mobile country provides equal opportunities for everyone, across big cities and small towns, and regardless of whether your parents are rich or poor. This report makes use of newly linked administrative data on all state-educated pupils born between 1986 and 1988 to follow a group of ...
External publication
In this CAYT report, we track the performance of high-achieving pupils from poor backgrounds through the education system and compare their trajectories with those of their more advantaged peers.


A socially mobile country provides equal opportunities for everyone, across big cities and small towns, and regardless of whether your parents are rich or poor. This event looked at the state of mobility across England and explored policy options for any government committed to a levelling up ...