nep-edu New Economics Papers
on Education
Issue of 2010‒03‒28
28 papers chosen by
Joao Carlos Correia Leitao
University of Beira Interior and Technical University of Lisbon

  1. Pre-School Education and School Performance The Case of Public Schools in Montevideo By Aguilar, Renato; Tansini, Ruben
  2. Higher education and youth transition from school to labour market: The Spanish case By Marta Rohana Lopez
  3. Parental decisions in a choice based school system: Analyzing the transition between primary and secondary school By Mattia Makovec; Alejandra Mizala; Andrés Barrera
  4. Higher Education Attainment: The Case of Intergenerational Transmission of Education in Portugal By Pereira, Pedro T.
  5. The Returns to English-Language Skills in India By Azam, Mehtabul; Chin, Aimee; Prakash, Nishith
  6. Education and social mobility By CREMER, Helmuth; DE DONDER, Philippe; PESTIEAU, Pierre
  7. The Effect of Class Size on Teacher Attrition: Evidence from Class Size Reduction Policies in New York State By Emily Pas Isenberg
  8. Competition between State Universities By Lisa Grazzini; Annalisa Luporini; Alessandro Petretto
  9. Education and the Welfare Gains from Employment Protection By Charlot, Olivier; Malherbet, Franck
  10. The Effect of Education on Smoking Behavior: New Evidence from Smoking Durations of a Sample of Twins By Koning, Pierre; Webbink, Dinand; Martin, Nicholas G.
  11. Can education be good for both growth and the environment? By BRECHET, Thierry; PRIEUR, Fabien
  12. The Evolution of the Returns to Human Capital in Canada, 1980-2005 By Boudarbat, Brahim; Lemieux, Thomas; Riddell, Craig
  13. Which firms want PhDS? The effect of the university-industry relationship on the PhD labour market By José García-Quevedo; Francisco Mas-Verdú; Jose Polo-Otero
  14. Microeconomic Approaches to Development: Schooling, Learning, and Growth By Mark R. Rosenzweig
  15. The Determinants of Education-Job Match among Canadian University Graduates By Brahim Boudarbat; Victor Chernoff
  16. School accountability : (how) can we reward schools and avoid cream-skimming By OOGHE, Erwin; SCHOKKAERT, Erik
  17. Exploring educational mobility in Europe By Antonio Di Paolo; Josep Lluís Raymond; Jorge Calero
  18. The Two Faces of Collaboration: Impacts of University-Industry Relations on Public Research By Markus Perkmann; Kathryn Walsh
  19. Impact of University Scientists on Innovations in Nanotechnology By Jinyoung Kim; Sangjoon John Lee; Gerald Marschke
  20. Education in Accounting using an Interactive System By Patrut, Bogdan
  21. Optimal education and pensions in an endogenous growth model By DEL REY, Elena; LOPEZ-GARCIA, Miguel
  22. Education and Body Mass Index: Evidence from ECHP By R Nakamura; L Siciliani
  23. South Africa’s economics of education: A stocktaking and an agenda for the way forward By Martin Gustafsson; Thabo Mabogoane
  24. The school reentry decision on poor girls: structural estimation and policy analysis using PROGRESA database By María Nieves Valdés
  25. Policy note on pre-primary schooling: An empirical contribution to the 2009 Medium Term Strategic Framework By Martin Gustafsson
  26. Academic Rankings and Research Governance By Margit Osterloh; Bruno S. Frey
  27. Academic Entrepreneurship: What are the Factors Shaping the Capacity of Academic Researchers to Identify and Exploit Entrepreneurial Opportunities? By Pablo D'Este; Surya Mahdi; Andy Neely
  28. Understanding the Income Gradient in College Attendance in Mexico: The Role of Heterogeneity in Expected Returns By Katja Maria Kaufmann

  1. By: Aguilar, Renato (Department of Economics, School of Business, Economics and Law, Göteborg University); Tansini, Ruben (Department of Economics Faculty of Social Sciences University of Uruguay)
    Abstract: In this paper we try to explain the academic performance of a sample of children starting their first year at public schools in 1999 in Montevideo, Uruguay. We are mainly interested in the effect of pre-school education on the children’s academic results. We found fairly strong empirical evidence to suggest that having pre-school education has a short term positive effect on these children’s results in the first year at school, and the long-term effect, after six years, seems to be somewhat weaker but is still positive. We also estimated several other factors connected with schools and with households that might lie behind children’s short-term and long-term performance. It is important to note that the results for boys are clearly differentiated from those for girls.<p>
    Keywords: pre-school education; school performance; Uruguay
    JEL: I21
    Date: 2010–03–17
  2. By: Marta Rohana Lopez
    Abstract: Using a specific data set drawn from the Spanish Module Education to Labour Market Transitions (2000), this paper analyses the labour market entrance of Spanish school leavers and the match between education and work at the early stages of working life. Moreover, special attention is paid to graduates, because Spain experienced a strong growth in the demand for higher education during the last decades of 20th century. The empirical evidence shows that, besides other personal and family individual's characteristics, human capital exerts a strong influence on the finding of an employment. With regard to the match between education and work, the results indicate that over-education is a common phenomenon in the Spanish youth labour market. However, unlike what one could expect, being a graduate seems to be associated to a lower likelihood of over-education in the first employment.
    Keywords: university education, school to work transition, mismatch in the labour market, Spain
    Date: 2009–07
  3. By: Mattia Makovec; Alejandra Mizala; Andrés Barrera
    Abstract: We study parental choice focusing on the transition between primary and secondary school, taking advantage of the fact that most Chilean students have to switch school at the end of the 8th grade, the last year of primary school. Using a recursive probit model we estimate jointly the probability of attending private voucher versus public school, taking explicitly into account the endogeneity of the school choice at primary level. We find that parents caring more about school academic performance are more likely to have their children enrolled in public schools at the secondary school level, while parents taking into account peers’ socioeconomic background and school values are more likely to select voucher schools. We also show that while private voucher schools “cream skim” the best students from the socioeconomic standpoint, this does not necessarily hold for high ability students. JEL classification: I2. Key words: parental choice, primary-secondary school transition, cream skimming, Chile.
    Date: 2010
  4. By: Pereira, Pedro T. (University of Madeira)
    Abstract: The lack of formal education and competences of the Portuguese workers is one of the biggest problems of the country. This lack is disappearing as quickly as desired and the young generations still lag far behind those in other OECD countries. This paper studies the intergenerational transmission of education achievement, in particular higher education completion, seeking to determine the influence on future attainment of parents’ education and labor market conditions while the child was growing up. We conclude that the education of the parents is very important, even if it is only one of them that has it. This influence seems not to be independent of the gender of the parent who has it. The fact that the parents face unemployment has a negative effect on the educational achievement of the child. Females generally perform better than males, but there are exceptions. For instance, it is significantly lower if the father has low education and the mother has secondary or higher education.
    Keywords: demand for schooling, human capital, parent’s education
    JEL: I21 I28 J11
    Date: 2010–03
  5. By: Azam, Mehtabul (Southern Methodist University); Chin, Aimee (University of Houston); Prakash, Nishith (Dartmouth College)
    Abstract: India's colonial legacy and linguistic diversity give English an important role in its economy, and this role has expanded due to globalization in recent decades. It is widely believed that there are sizable economic returns to English-language skills in India, but the extent of these returns is unknown due to lack of a microdata set containing measures of both earnings and English ability. In this paper, we use a newly available data set – the India Human Development Survey, 2005 – to quantify the effects of English-speaking ability on wages. We find that being fluent in English (compared to not speaking any English) increases hourly wages of men by 34%, which is as much as the return to completing secondary school and half as much as the return to completing a Bachelor’s degree. Being able to speak a little English significantly increases male hourly wages 13%. There is considerable heterogeneity in returns to English. More experienced and more educated workers receive higher returns to English. The complementarity between English skills and education appears to have strengthened over time. Only the more educated among young workers earn a premium for English skill, whereas older workers across all education groups do.
    Keywords: English language, human capital, India
    JEL: J31 J24 O15
    Date: 2010–03
  6. By: CREMER, Helmuth; DE DONDER, Philippe; PESTIEAU, Pierre (UniversitŽ catholique de Louvain (UCL). Center for Operations Research and Econometrics (CORE))
    Keywords: elitism, egalitarianism, private education
    Date: 2009–04–01
  7. By: Emily Pas Isenberg
    Abstract: Starting in 1999, New York State implemented class size reduction policies targeted at early elementary grades, but due to funding limitations, most schools reduced class size in some grades and not others. I use class size variation within a school induced by the policies to construct instrumental variable estimates of the effect of class size on teacher attrition. Teachers with smaller classes were not significantly less likely to leave schools in the full sample of districts but were less likely to leave a school in districts that targeted the same grade across schools. District-wide class size reduction policies were more likely to persist in the same grade in the next year, suggesting that teacher expectations of continued smaller classes played a role in their decision whether or not to leave a school. A decrease in class size from 23 to 20 students (a decrease of one standard deviation) under a district-wide policy decreases the probability that a teacher leaves a school by 4.2 percentage points.
    Keywords: class size, teachers, teacher attrition
    JEL: I29 J45 J62
    Date: 2010–02
  8. By: Lisa Grazzini (Università degli Studi di Firenze, Dipartimento di Scienze Economiche); Annalisa Luporini (Università degli Studi di Firenze, Dipartimento di Scienze Economiche); Alessandro Petretto (Università degli Studi di Firenze, Dipartimento di Scienze Economiche)
    Abstract: We analyse how state university competition to collect resources may a¤ect both the quality of teaching and research. By considering a set-up where two state universities behave strategically, we model their interaction with potential students as a sequential noncooperative game. We show that di¤erent types of equilibrium may arise, depending on the mix of research and teaching activity supplied by each university, and the mix of low and high ability students attending each university. The most e¢ cient equilibrium results in the creation of an élite institution attended only by high ability students. Low ability students are segregated in the other university, but obtain the same teaching quality level and pay the same tuition fees.
    Keywords: University Competition, Research, Tuition Fees
    JEL: H52 I22 I23
    Date: 2010
  9. By: Charlot, Olivier (Université des Antilles et de la Guyane); Malherbet, Franck (University of Cergy-Pontoise)
    Abstract: This paper studies the impact of an European-like labor market regulation on the return to schooling, equilibrium unemployment and welfare. We show that firing costs and temporary employment have opposite effects on educational choices. We furthermore demonstrate that a laissez faire economy with no regulation is inefficient as it is characterized by insufficient educational investments leading to excess job destruction and inadequate job creation. By stabilizing employment relationships, firing costs may spur educational investments and therefore lead to welfare and productivity gains, though a first-best policy would be to subsidize education. However, there is little chance for a dual labor market, as is common in many European countries, with heavily regulated long-term contracts and more flexible short-term contracts to raise the incentives to schooling and aggregate welfare.
    Keywords: human capital, job destruction, matching frictions, efficiency
    JEL: I20 J20 J60
    Date: 2010–03
  10. By: Koning, Pierre (CPB Netherlands Bureau for Economic Policy Analysis); Webbink, Dinand (CPB Netherlands Bureau for Economic Policy Analysis); Martin, Nicholas G. (Queensland Institute of Medical Research)
    Abstract: This paper analyses the effect of education on starting and quitting smoking, using longitudinal data of Australian twins. The endogeneity of education, censoring of smoking durations and the timing of starting smoking versus that of completion of education are taken into account by the flexible Mixed Proportional Hazard specification. Unobserved effects are assumed to be twin specific and possibly correlated with completed education years. We find that one additional year of education reduces the duration of smoking with 9 months but has no effect on the decision to start smoking.
    Keywords: education, duration models, smoking
    JEL: C41 I21
    Date: 2010–03
  11. By: BRECHET, Thierry (UniversitŽ catholique de Louvain (UCL). Center for Operations Research and Econometrics (CORE)); PRIEUR, Fabien
    Keywords: overlapping generations, public education, environmental maintenance, green awareness, sustainable growth
    JEL: Q56 D62 D91
    Date: 2009–03–01
  12. By: Boudarbat, Brahim (University of Montreal); Lemieux, Thomas (University of British Columbia, Vancouver); Riddell, Craig (University of British Columbia, Vancouver)
    Abstract: We examine the evolution of the returns to human capital in Canada over the period 1980-2005. Our main finding is that returns to education increased substantially for Canadian men, contrary to conclusions reached previously. Most of this rise took place in the early 1980s and since 1995. Returns to education also rose, albeit more modestly, for Canadian women. Another important development is that after years of expansion, the wage gap between younger and older workers stabilized after 1995. Controlling for work experience and using Canadian Census data appear to account for the main differences between our results and earlier findings.
    Keywords: human capital, wage differentials, Canada
    JEL: J24 J31
    Date: 2010–03
  13. By: José García-Quevedo (University of Barcelona & IEB); Francisco Mas-Verdú (Universidad Politécnica de Valencia & IEB); Jose Polo-Otero (University of Barcelona & CYD Foundation & IEB)
    Abstract: PhD graduates hold the highest education degree, are trained to conduct research and can be considered a key element in the creation, commercialization and diffusion of innovations. The impact of PhDs on innovation and economic development takes place through several channels such as the accumulation of scientific capital stock, the enhancement of technology transfers and the promotion of cooperation relationships in innovation processes. Although the placement of PhDs in industry provides a very important mechanism for transmitting knowledge from universities to firms, information about the characteristics of the firms that employ PhDs is very scarce. The goal of this paper is to improve understanding of the determinants of the demand for PhDs in the private sector. Three main potential determinants of the demand for PhDs are considered: cooperation between firms and universities, R&D activities of firms and several characteristics of firms, size, sector, productivity and age. The results from the econometric analysis show that cooperation between firms and universities encourages firms to recruit PhDs and point to the existence of accumulative effects in the hiring of PhD graduates.
    Keywords: PhD, university, R&D, technology transfer
    JEL: O32 J24 I23
    Date: 2010
  14. By: Mark R. Rosenzweig (Economic Growth Center, Yale University)
    Abstract: I illustrate the variety of approaches to development issues microeconomists employ, focusing on studies that illuminate and quantify the major mechanisms posited by growth theorists who highlight the role of education in fostering growth. I begin with a basic issue: what are the returns to schooling? I discuss microeconomic studies that estimate schooling returns using alternative approaches to estimating wage equations, which require assumptions that are unlikely to be met in low-income countries, looking at inferences based on how education interacts with policy and technological changes in the labor and marriage markets. I then review research addressing whether schooling facilitates learning, or merely imparts knowledge, and whether there is social learning that gives rise to educational externalities. I next examine studies quantifying the responsiveness of educational investments to changes in schooling returns and assess whether and where there exist important barriers to such investments when returns justify their increase.
    Keywords: schooling, development, growth
    JEL: O11 O15 O33 J24
    Date: 2010–03
  15. By: Brahim Boudarbat; Victor Chernoff
    Abstract: This study uses data from the Follow-up of Graduates Survey – Class of 2000, to look at the determinants of education-job match among Canadian university graduates. From a public policy perspective, the question of education-job match is relevant given the substantial investment society puts into its postsecondary institutions, and the role devoted to human capital in economic development. Our results indicate that one graduate out of three (35.1%) is in a job that is not closely related to his or her education. The most important result is that demographic and socioeconomic characteristics (gender and family background) do not significantly affect the match. On the other hand, education characteristics strongly influence match, with field specific programs (such as “Health sciences” and “Education”) having the highest likelihood of obtaining an education-job match. In addition, the level of education (i.e. graduates with a postgraduate degree vs. a bachelor degree), as well as good grades, strongly affect the match. Employment characteristics also affect the match, but to a mixed extent, with certain characteristics, such as industry, as well as working full-time (vs. part time) affecting the match to a strong extent, while others, such as the permanence of employment, as well as the method used to obtain employment, not having a significant effect on match. <P>Cette étude utilise les données de l’Enquête de suivi auprès des diplômés de la promotion de 2000, réalisée en 2005. L’objectif est d’examiner les déterminants de la correspondance entre le programme d’études complété et l’emploi obtenu par les diplômés universitaires canadiens. D’une perspective de politiques publiques, la question de la correspondance entre les études et l’emploi est pertinente compte tenu de l'importante des moyens investis par la société canadienne dans ses institutions d'enseignement postsecondaire, ainsi que le rôle dévoué au capital humain dans le développement économique. Nos résultats indiquent qu’un diplômé sur trois (35,1 %) est dans un emploi qui n'est pas étroitement lié à ses études. Toutefois, le résultat le plus important est que les caractéristiques démographiques et socio-économiques des diplômés (sexe et background familial) n'affectent pas de manière significative la probabilité d’obtenir un emploi correspondant à ses études. Ce sont les caractéristiques du programme d’études (niveau et domaine) qui influencent fortement cette probabilité. Les diplômés des domaines d’études à caractère spécifique comme la santé et l’éducation sont les plus susceptibles d'obtenir un emploi qui correspond à leurs études. En outre, un niveau de scolarité élevé (deuxième ou troisième cycles), ainsi que de bonnes notes, ont un grand effet positif sur la probabilité d’accéder à un emploi en adéquation avec les études. Les caractéristiques de l'emploi affectent également cette adéquation, mais dans une mesure contrastée, avec certaines caractéristiques, comme l'industrie et le travail à temps plein, qui ont un effet significatif, tandis que d'autres, telles que la permanence de l'emploi et la méthode utilisée pour obtenir un emploi, qui n’ont pas d’effet significatif.
    Keywords: education-job match, university graduates, Canada, Follow-up of Graduates Survey, correspondance études-emploi, diplômés universitaires, Canada, Enquête de suivi auprès des diplômés.
    Date: 2010–03–01
  16. By: OOGHE, Erwin (Department of Economics, KULeuven, B-3000 Leuven, Belgium); SCHOKKAERT, Erik (UniversitŽ catholique de Louvain, CORE, B-1348 Louvain-la-Neuve, Belgium and Department of Economics, KULeuven, B-3000 Leuven, Belgium)
    Abstract: Introducing school accountability may create incentives for efficiency. However, if the performance measure used does not correct for pupil characteristics, it will lead to an inequitable treatment of schools and create perverse incentives for cream-skimming. We apply the theory of fair allocation to show how to integrate empirical information about the educational production function in a coherent theoretical framework. The requirements of rewarding performance and correcting for pupil characteristics are incompatible if we want the funding scheme to be applicable for all educational production functions. However, we characterize an attractive subsidy scheme under specific restrictions on the educational production function. This subsidy scheme uses only information which can be controlled easily by the regulator. We show with Flemish data how the proposed funding scheme can be implemented. Correcting for pupil characteristics has a strong impact on the subsidies (and on the underlying performance ranking) of schools
    Date: 2009–12–01
  17. By: Antonio Di Paolo (Universitat Autònoma de Barcelona & IEB); Josep Lluís Raymond (Universitat Autònoma de Barcelona & IEB); Jorge Calero (Universitat de Barcelona & IEB)
    Abstract: This paper is concerned with the investigation of the intergenerational mobility of education in several European countries and its changes across birth cohorts (1940-1980), using a new mobility index that considers the total degree of mobility as the weighted sum of mobility with respect to both parents. Moreover, this mobility index enables the analysis of the role of family characteristics as mediating factors in the statistical association between individual and parental education. We find that Nordic countries display lower levels of educational persistence but that the degree of mobility increases over time only in those countries with low initial levels. Moreover, the results suggest that the degree of mobility with respect to fathers and mothers converges to the same level and that family characteristics accounts for an important part of the statistical association between parental education and children’s schooling; a particular finding is that the most important elements of family characteristics are the family’s socio-economic status and educational assortative mating of the parents.
    Keywords: educational economics, intergenerational mobility, Europe, birth cohorts, family
    JEL: J62 I21 I29 D13
    Date: 2010
  18. By: Markus Perkmann; Kathryn Walsh
    Abstract: We analyze the impact of university-industry relationships on public research. Our inductive study of university-industry collaboration in engineering suggests that basic projects are more likely to yield academically valuable knowledge than applied projects. However, applied projects show higher degrees of partner interdependence and therefore enable exploratory learning by academics, leading to new ideas and projects. This result holds especially for research-oriented academics working in the ‘sciences of the artificial’ and engaging in multiple relationships with industry. Our learning-centred interpretation qualifies the notion of entrepreneurial science as a driver of applied university-industry collaboration. We conclude with implications for science and technology policy.
    Keywords: University industry relations; Collaborative research; Contract research; Academic consulting; Science technology links; Engineering
    Date: 2010
  19. By: Jinyoung Kim (Korea University); Sangjoon John Lee (Alfred University); Gerald Marschke (University at Albany and NBER)
    Abstract: Using U.S. patent records in nanotechnoloy, we study the impact of university research on industry innovations with the premise that knowledge is diffused from universities to industry via personnel with university research experience. Appearing on a patent assigned to a university is evidence that an inventor has been exposed to university research, either directly as a university researcher or through some from of collaboration with university researchers. Over the period 1985-97, we find a steady increase in industry's employment of inventors with university research experience. In the 1990s we find the productivity (in terms of patenting rates and patent quality) of inventors with university backgrounds begins to exceed the productivity of the inventors without such experience. We also find that the share of industry patents in nanotechnology that cite university-assigned patents almost doubles during the period and inventors with university experience cite mostly university patents not invented by them, implying that they are instrumental in transferring general knowledge created throughout the university community.
    Keywords: Nanotechnology, Patents; Innovations; Knowledge spillovers; University research
    JEL: J62 O31 O33
    Date: 2010
  20. By: Patrut, Bogdan
    Abstract: This paper represents a summary of a research report and the results of developing an educational software, including a multi-agent system for teaching accounting bases and financial accounting. The paper describes the structure of the multi-agent system, defined as a complex network of s-agents. Each s-agent contains 6 pedagogical agents and a coordinator agent. We have defined a new architecture (BeSGOTE) that extends the BDI architecture for intelligent agents and we have defined a mixing-up relation among the accounts, presenting the way in which it can be used for testing students.
    Keywords: Computer Aided Education; Multi-Agent System; Artificial Intelligence; Accounting Education
    JEL: M53 A20 C88
    Date: 2010–03–01
  21. By: DEL REY, Elena (Universitat de Girona, Spain); LOPEZ-GARCIA, Miguel (Universitat Autonoma de Barcelona, Spain)
    Abstract: It is well known that, in OLG economies with life-cycle saving and exogenous growth, competitive equilibria will in general fail to achieve optimality and may even be dynamically inefficient. This is a consequence of individuals accumulating amounts of physical capital that differ from the level which would maximize welfare along a balanced growth path (the Golden Rule). With human capital, a second potential source of departure from optimality arises, to wit: individuals may not choose the correct amount of education investment. However, the Golden Rule concept, widely used in exogenous growth frameworks, has not found its way into endogenous growth models. In this paper, we propose to recover the Golden Rule of physical and also human capital accumulation. The optimal policy to decentralize the Golden Rule balanced growth path when there are no constraints for individuals to finance their education investments is also characterized. It is shown that it involves positive pensions and negative education subsidies (i.e., taxes)
    Keywords: endogenous growth, human capital, intergenerational transfers, education policy
    JEL: D90 H21 H52 H55
    Date: 2009–12–01
  22. By: R Nakamura; L Siciliani
    Abstract: We study the association between education and body mass index across ten European countries (Denmark, Belgium, Greece, Spain, Ireland, Italy, Austria, Portugal, Finland and Sweden) using the European Community Household Panel. OLS and Probit estimation suggest that on average education is associated with lower BMI and a lower probability of being obese. For women, the difference of BMI between the lowest education group and the highest one ranges between -7.15% (Austria) and -2.43% (Finland). The reduction in the probability of being obese ranges between -7.18% (Spain) and -3% (Italy). For men, the reduction of BMI ranges between -4.29%(Denmark) and zero (Greece). The reduction in the probability of being obese ranges between -7.84% (Austria) and zero (Greece). Quantile regression suggests that the effect of education is larger at the upper quantiles than at the lower ones. Higher education also reduces the dispersion of the BMI distribution.
    Keywords: Obesity, Body Mass Index, Education
    JEL: I12 I20 C21
    Date: 2010–03
  23. By: Martin Gustafsson (Department of Economics, University of Stellenbosch); Thabo Mabogoane (Jet Education Services, Johannesburg)
    Abstract: The paper reviews some of the existing economics of education literature from the perspective of South Africa’s education policymaking needs. It also puts forward a suggested research agenda for future work. The review is arranged according to five key areas of analysis: rates of return, production functions, teacher incentives, benefit incidence, cross-country comparisons. Whilst benefit incidence analysis is able to demonstrate large improvements in the equity of public financing, cross-county comparisons reveal that not only is quality inequitably distributed, it is overall well below what the country’s level of development would predict. Production functions, especially if translated to cost effectiveness models, can point to important policy solutions. Rates of return are difficult for policymakers to interpret, and need to be viewed in the context of qualifications. Teacher incentives is a policy area that is badly in need of a better theoretical and empirical basis.
    Keywords: Economics of education, South Africa, education policy, rates of return, production functions, teacher incentives, benefit-incidence analysis
    JEL: I21 I28
    Date: 2010
  24. By: María Nieves Valdés
    Abstract: In this paper I present a dynamic structural model of girls' schooling choices and estimate it using the Mexican PROGRESA database. This structural approach allows evaluating the efectiveness of several policies to increase school reentry rates for girls in low-income households. To increase school attendance among poor children in developing countries, policy makers have implemented conditional cash transfers programs. Although transfers have been successful in keeping girls at school, they do not increase school attendance among girls who have dropped out of school. Cash transfer programs may fail because most of these poor girls leave school to stay at home helping in housework, rather than working for a salary. Results suggest that effective policies to increase school reentry rates for poor girls are free access to community nurseries and kindergartens, and increasingg the availability of secondary schools.
    Keywords: Policy evaluation, Dynamic discrete choice structural models, School choices for girls, School reentry, PROGRESA
    JEL: I21 I28 J16 O15
    Date: 2009–10
  25. By: Martin Gustafsson (Department of Economics, University of Stellenbosch)
    Abstract: Various data analysis approaches are used to gauge recent pre-primary enrolment trends in South Africa and the level of compliance with official age-grade norms in Grades R and 1. An analysis of the circumstances of Grade R learners finds that large class sizes are a problem. Two separate logit models are used to examine what factors are associated with better pre-school participation and whether participation in pre-school leads to better learning outcomes in primary school.
    Keywords: Pre-primary schooling, South Africa, Age-grade norms
    JEL: I21 I28
    Date: 2010
  26. By: Margit Osterloh; Bruno S. Frey
    Abstract: Academic rankings today are the backbone of research governance, which seem to fit the aims of "new public management" on the one side and the idea of the "republic of science" on the other side. Nevertheless rankings recently came under scrutiny. We discuss advantages and disadvantages of academic rankings, in particular their unintended negative consequences on the research process. To counterbalance these negative consequences we suggest (a) rigorous selection and socialization, and (b) downplaying the impact of rankings in order to reconcile academic self-governance with accountability to the public.
    Keywords: peer reviews; rankings; research governance; psychological economics; new public management; economics of science; control theory
    JEL: H52 H83 I23 J44 L38
    Date: 2010–03
  27. By: Pablo D'Este; Surya Mahdi; Andy Neely
    Abstract: This paper aims at improving our understanding of the attributes of academic researchers that influence the capacity to identify and exploit entrepreneurial opportunities. We investigate a number of factors highlighted in the literature as influencing the entrepreneurial activities undertaken by academics. Our results show that identification and exploitation of entrepreneurial opportunities are shaped by different factors. While identification of commercial opportunities is driven by prior entrepreneurial experience and the excellence of the academic work, exploitation of entrepreneurial opportunities is driven by the extent of previous collaboration with industry partners, cognitive integration and prior entrepreneurial experience.
    Keywords: Academic entrepreneurship; Opportunity identification; Opportunity exploitation; Spin-offs; Patenting; University-business collaboration
    Date: 2010
  28. By: Katja Maria Kaufmann
    Abstract: Differences in college enrollment rates between poor and rich students are a prevalent phenomenon, but particularly striking in Latin America. The literature suggests explanations such as differences in "college preparedness" on the one hand, in that poor students lack skills that enable them to benefit from college, and "credit constraints" on the other hand. One explanation that has been neglected in this analysis consists of differences in information sets between the poor and the rich - for example about career opportunities-translating into different perceptions of individual returns to college. Data on people's subjective expectations of returns allow to take this factor into account and to directly address the following identification problem: conditional on their information sets poor people might expect low returns and thus decide not to attend. Or they might face high (unobserved) costs that prevent them from attending de-spite high expected returns. Conventional approaches rely on strong assumptions about people's information sets and about how they form expectations to address this identification problem. Data on people's subjective expectations of returns as well as on their schooling decisions allow me to directly estimate and compare cost distributions of poor and rich individuals. I find that poor individuals require significantly higher expected returns to be induced to attend college, implying that they face higher costs than individuals with wealthy parents. I then test predictions of a model of college attendance choice in the presence of credit constraints, using parental income and wealth as a proxy for the household's (unobserved) interest rate. I find that poor individuals with high expected returns are particularly responsive to changes in direct costs, which is consistent with credit constraints playing an important role. Evaluating potential welfare implications by applying the Local Instrumental Variables approach of Heckman and Vytlacil (2005) to my model, I find that a sizeable fraction of poor individuals would change their decision in response to a reduction in direct costs. Individuals at the margin have expected returns that are as high or higher than the individuals already attending college, suggesting that government policies such as fellowship programs could lead to large welfare gains.
    Date: 2010

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