Maximally maintained inequality and essentially maintained inequality: Crossnational comparisons

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle


The implications of maximally maintained inequality (MMI) and its alternative essentially maintained inequality (EMI) for inequality of educational opportunity within societies and over time in those societies are well-understood and frequently addressed in the literature. MMI and EMI may also have implications for cross-national differences. The ISSP "Social Inequality" module fielded 1999-2001 provides highly comparable data useful for assessing hypotheses about cross-national variation in inequality of educational opportunity. Patterns of inequality of educational opportunity in the ISSP data are consistent with MMI and EMI: the association between socioeconomic background and education falls as the proportion of the labor force with postsecondary education rises.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)237-252
Number of pages16
JournalSociological Theory and Methods
Issue number2
StatePublished - 2006


  • Education
  • Inequality
  • Stratification

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Social Sciences (miscellaneous)
  • Sociology and Political Science

Fingerprint Dive into the research topics of 'Maximally maintained inequality and essentially maintained inequality: Crossnational comparisons'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this