nep-edu New Economics Papers
on Education
Issue of 2006‒09‒11
five papers chosen by
Joao Carlos Correia Leitao
Universidade da Beira Interior

  1. Latin American universities and the third mission : trends, challenges, and policy options By Thorn, Kristian; Soo, Maarja
  2. What Research Now Needs to Tell Policy Makers about School Choice By Lee C. Spector
  3. Explaining Increases in Higher Education Costs By Robert B. Archibald; David H. Feldman
  4. U.S. Universities' Net Returns from Patenting and Licensing: A Quantile Regression Analysis By Harun Bulut; GianCarlo Moschini
  5. Do Alternative Opportunities Matter? The Role of Female Labor Markets in the Decline of Teacher Quality By Marigee Bacolod

  1. By: Thorn, Kristian; Soo, Maarja
    Abstract: Universities in Latin America are increasingly considered instruments of social and economic development and face rising expectations in regard to supplying relevant skills, undertaking applied research, and engaging in commercial activity. The paper discusses trends and challenges within Latin American universities, as well as policy options available for strengthening their contributions to social and economic development. The so-called third mission of universities is often equated with knowledge transfer narrowly defined as licensing and commercialization of research. The paper adopts a broader approach and explores how the new role of universities affects all aspects of academic practice in Latin America, including advanced education and research. It concludes that policymakers and university managers in Latin America face an important challenge of defining a legal framework, sound management procedures, and notably, incentive systems that stimulate outreach and entrepreneurship among students and staff while recognizing and preserving the distinct roles of universities.
    Keywords: Tertiary Education,Agricultural Knowledge & Information Systems,Rural Development Knowledge & Information Systems,ICT Policy and Strategies,Secondary Education
    Date: 2006–08–01
  2. By: Lee C. Spector (Department of Economics, Ball State University)
    Abstract: The purpose of this paper is to present a case for a new generation of research on the question of school choice. This case is based on two premises. First, it is likely that taxpayers, who have school aged children and taxpayers who don't, differ with respect to their preferences concerning education. Since al taxpayers must decide on whether and how much school choice should be allowed, it is important to see how these preferences intersect with respect to both educational and extracurricular outputs of the educational process. Second, any policy decision focuses on maximizing a set of goals given a series of constraints. Therefore, it is necessary to examine all aspects of the school choice question simultaneously in order to make incisive policy recommendations. This paper presents a simple economic model which shows the importance of these premises in the policy decision and suggests that the next generation of researchers should consider these premises as important parts of their investigation.
    Date: 2006–08
  3. By: Robert B. Archibald (Department of Economics, College of William and Mary); David H. Feldman (Department of Economics, College of William and Mary)
    Abstract: This paper presents new evidence on the conflict between two competing explanations of the increase in college costs, the cost disease theory of William Baumol and William Bowen and the revenue theory of cost of Howard Bowen. Using cross section data, the paper demonstrates that the cost disease explanation dominates.
    Keywords: Higher education costs, cost disease, revenue theory of cost
    JEL: I22 I23 I28
    Date: 2006–09–04
  4. By: Harun Bulut; GianCarlo Moschini (Center for Agricultural and Rural Development (CARD))
    Abstract: In line with the rights and incentives provided by the Bayh-Dole Act of 1980, U.S. universities have increased their involvement in patenting and licensing activities through their own technology transfer offices. Only a few U.S. universities are obtaining large returns, however, whereas others are continuing with these activities despite negligible or negative returns. We assess the U.S. universities' potential to generate returns from licensing activities by modeling and estimating quantiles of the distribution of net licensing returns conditional on some of their structural characteristics. We find limited prospects for public universities without a medical school everywhere in their distribution. Other groups of universities (private, and public with a medical school) can expect significant but still fairly modest returns only beyond the 0.9th quantile. These findings call into question the appropriateness of the revenue-generating motive for the aggressive rate of patenting and licensing by U.S. universities.
    Keywords: Bayh-Dole Act, quantile regression, returns to innovation, skewed distributions, technology transfer, university patents. JEL numbers: C13, L31, L33, O31, O32
    Date: 2006–09
  5. By: Marigee Bacolod
    Abstract: This paper documents the widely perceived but little investigated notion that teachers today are less qualified than they once were. Using standardized test scores, undergraduate institution selectivity, and positive assortative mating characteristics as measures of quality, evidence of a marked decline in the quality of young women going into teaching between 1960 and 1990 is presented. In contrast, the quality of young women becoming professionals increased. The Roy model of selfselection is used to highlight how occupation differences in the returns to skill determine average teacher quality. Estimates suggest the significance of increasing professional opportunities for women in affecting the decline in teacher quality.
    JEL: I20 J16 J31 J48
    Date: 2006–07

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