How Having a Military Father Affects Promotion to General Officer
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This study identifies factors associated with rapid promotion rates among elite United States Army officers. It is particularly interested whether officer mobility rates are affected by the military experience of the officer’s father. Existing studies of military mobility focus primarily on factors dealing with three key areas: military organization, historical situations, and social background. Fathers’ prior military service has received relatively little attention. This neglect is unwarranted, as there are studies enough to suggest that a father’s occupation may influence the choices and values of their offspring, which in turn bear on the promotion rates of their sons. This study suggests that among a set of elite officers, those who had a father with a history of military service are promoted to elite level more quickly than those without a father who served. To assess this hypothesis, Qualitative Comparative Analysis (QCA) software developed by Charles Ragin in 1987 is used. QCA allows us to identify what factors are most important among a set of elite Army officers who were most quickly promoted to general officer rank.
Karstadt, Kathleen Ann (2016). How Having a Military Father Affects Promotion to General Officer. Master's thesis, Texas A & M University. Available electronically from