nep-edu New Economics Papers
on Education
Issue of 2014‒12‒29
27 papers chosen by
João Carlos Correia Leitão
Universidade da Beira Interior

  1. The academic and labor market returns of university professors By Braga, Michela; Paccagnella, Marco; Pellizzari, Michele
  2. Does Homework Perpetuate Inequities in Education? By OECD
  3. The impact of students' part-time work on educational outcomes By Rokicka, Magdalena
  4. Gender Peer Effects in School, a Birth Cohort Approach By Ciccone, Antonio; Garcia-Fontes, Walter
  5. Family Structure and the Education Gender Gap: Evidence from Italian Provinces By Bertocchi, Graziella; Bozzano, Monica
  6. The Illusion of School Choice: Empirical Evidence from Barcelona By Calsamiglia, Caterina; Güell, Maia
  7. Does Secular Education Impact Religiosity, Electoral Participation and the Propensity to Vote for Islamic Parties? Evidence from an Education Reform in a Muslim Country By Resul Cesur; Naci Mocan
  8. The Value of Smarter Teachers: International Evidence on Teacher Cognitive Skills and Student Performance By Hanushek, Eric A.; Piopiunik, Marc; Wiederhold, Simon
  9. Evidence on Credit Constraints, University Attendance and Income Contingent Loans By Buly A. Cardak; Chris Ryan
  10. School quality and the performance of disadvantaged learners in South Africa By Marisa Coetzee
  11. The Value of Smarter Teachers: International Evidence on Teacher Cognitive Skills and Student Performance By Eric A. Hanushek; Marc Piopiunik; Simon Wiederhold
  12. Matching higher education offer with labour market needs till 2020 - the case of Lodzkie region By Lukasz Arendt; Agnieszka Rzenca
  13. Bridging the Gaps: Inequalities in Childrens' Educational Outcomes in Ireland By David Madden
  14. Did Tuition Fees in Germany Constrain Students' Budgets? New Evidence from a Natural Experiment By Thomsen, Stephan L.; von Haaren, Friederike
  15. Perceived benefits and barriers to the use of high-speed broadband in Ireland’s second-level schools By Devitt, Niamh; Lyons, Sean; McCoy, Selina
  16. Does Reading During the Summer Build Reading Skills? Evidence from a Randomized Experiment in 463 Classrooms By Jonathan Guryan; James S. Kim; David M. Quinn
  17. Comparative analysis of the implementation of Triple Helix Theory in Greece and Hungary and lessons learned from both cases´ By Chrysanthi Balomenou; Aniko Kalman; Konstantinos Kolovos
  18. The Effectiveness of Apprenticeship Training - a within track comparison of workplace-based and school-based vocational training in Hungary By Daniel Horn
  19. Estimating the human capital stock for Cape Verde, 1950-2012 By Silves J.C. Moreira; Pedro Cosme Vieira; Aurora A.C. Teixeira
  20. The length of exposure to antipoverty transfer programmes: what is the relevance for children's human capital formation? By Juan M. Villa
  21. One Size does not Fit All: Multiple Dimensions of Ability, College Attendance and Wages By María F. Prada; Sergio S. Urzúa
  22. Early Maternal Time Investment and Early Child Outcomes By del Bono, Emilia; Francesconi, Marco
  23. Heterogeneous Returns to U.S. College Selectivity and the Value of Graduate Degree Attainment By Seki, Mai
  24. Alfabetismo financiero en jóvenes mexicanos de 15 a 18 años. By F. Alejandro Villagómez
  25. The German vocational education and training system: Its institutional configuration, strengths, and challenges By Solga, Heike; Protsch, Paula; Ebner, Christian; Brzinsky-Fay, Christian
  26. The Shaping of Skills:Wages, Education, Innovation By Valeria Cirillo; Mario Pianta; Leopoldo Nascia
  27. Location of research-based spin-offs: how relevant are regional effects? By Oscarina Conceição; Ana Paula Faria; Margarida Fontes

  1. By: Braga, Michela; Paccagnella, Marco; Pellizzari, Michele
    Abstract: This paper estimates the impact of college teaching on students' academic achievement and labor market outcomes using administrative data from Bocconi University matched with Italian tax records. The estimation exploits the random allocation of students to teachers in a fixed sequence of compulsory courses. We find that the academic and labor market returns of teachers are only mildly positively correlated and that the professors who are best at improving the academic achievement of their best students are not always also the ones who boost their earnings the most, especially for the least able students.
    Keywords: higher education; teacher quality
    JEL: I20 M55
    Date: 2014–12
  2. By: OECD
    Abstract: <ul> <li> While most 15-year-old students spend part of their after-school time doing homework, the amount of time they spend on it shrank between 2003 and 2012. </li> <li> Socio-economically advantaged students and students who attend socio-economically advantaged schools tend to spend more time doing homework.</li> <li> While the amount of homework assigned is associated with mathematics performance among students and schools, other factors are more important in determining the performance of school systems as a whole. </li></ul>
    Date: 2014–12
  3. By: Rokicka, Magdalena
    Abstract: This paper addresses the issue of school students’ part-time employment in the last year of compulsory education, and its impact on educational outcomes. Estimating the causal effect is not straightforward. Firstly, those who obtain part-time employment could have certain unobservable characteristics, which also have an impact on their educational outcomes. Secondly, the decisions to work part-time while still in school and to continue education after age 16 might be made simultaneously, which leads to a problem with endogeneity. To account for this, I apply an instrumental approach and a recursive bivariate probit estimation. My results suggest that working part-time during the last year of compulsory education has a negative impact on educational achievements and on participation in education in the subsequent year.
    Date: 2014–12–01
  4. By: Ciccone, Antonio; Garcia-Fontes, Walter
    Abstract: We propose estimating gender peer effects in school by exploiting within-school variation in gender composition across birth cohorts. Our approach differs from the existing literature, which exploits variation in gender composition at a given grade level in different years. We argue that the birth cohort approach is a useful alternative as the grade level approach generally yields spurious gender peer effects when there is grade retention. The birth cohort approach applied to primary schools in Spain indicates statistically significant positive gender peer effects of girls on boys’ academic achievement and statistically insignificant effects of girls on girls’ achievement.
    Keywords: gender; grade retention; peer effects; school
    JEL: I20
    Date: 2014–06
  5. By: Bertocchi, Graziella; Bozzano, Monica
    Abstract: We investigate the determinants of the education gender gap in Italy in historical perspective with a focus on the influence of family structure. We capture the latter with two indicators: residential habits (nuclear vs. complex families) and inheritance rules (partition vs. primogeniture). After controlling for economic, institutional, religious, and cultural factors, we find that over the 1861-1901 period family structure is a driver of the education gender gap, with a higher female to male enrollment rate ratio in upper primary schools being associated with nuclear residential habits and equal partition of inheritance. We also find that only the effect of inheritance rules persists over the 1971-2001 period.
    Keywords: convergence; education gender gap; family types; inheritance; institutions; Italian Unification; religion
    JEL: E02 H75 I25 J16 N33 O15
    Date: 2014–08
  6. By: Calsamiglia, Caterina; Güell, Maia
    Abstract: School choice aims to improve (1) the matching between children and schools and (2) students’ educational outcomes. Yet, the concern is that disadvantaged families are less able to exercise choice, which raises (3) equity concerns. The Boston mechanism (BM) is a procedure that is widely used around the world to resolve overdemands for particular schools by defining a set of priority points based on neighborhood and socioeconomic characteristics. The mechanism design literature has shown that under the BM, parents may not have incentives to provide their true preferences, thereby establishing a trade-off between preferences and perceived safety. However, the set of possible Nash equilibria arising from the BM is large and has varying properties, and what will actually happen is an empirical question. We exploit an unexpected change in the definition of neighborhood in Barcelona, which provides an exogenous change in the set of schools perceived as safe and allows us to separate housing and schooling decisions to assess the importance of this trade-off in the data. We find that safety carries a large weight in family choice. The huge majority of parents opt for schools for which they have the highest priority—the neighborhood schools—excluding other preferred schools. Similar to the previous literature, we also find that some parents seem naive, but using school registry data, we find that a significant fraction of them have the outside option of private schools, which allows them to take higher risks to access the best public schools. At the other extreme, some of the naive are not matched to any of the schools they applied for. Our results suggest that when allowing school choice under the BM with priorities: (1) the gains in terms of matching seem limited, because the equilibrium allocation is not very different from a neighborhood-based assignment, (2) estimating the effect of choice on outcomes by implementing such a mechanism may lead to a lower bound on the potential effects of having choice, and (3) important inequalities emerge beyond parents’ naivete found in the literature.
    Keywords: Boston mechanism; Priorities; school choice
    JEL: C78 D63 I24
    Date: 2014–06
  7. By: Resul Cesur (University of Connecticut); Naci Mocan (Louisiana State University, NBER and IZA)
    Abstract: Using a unique survey of adults in Turkey, we find that an increase in educational attainment, due to an exogenous secular education reform, decreased women’s propensity to identify themselves as religious, lowered their tendency to wear a religious head cover (head scarf, turban or burka) and increased the tendency for modernity. We also find that education has a negative impact on women’s propensity to vote for Islamic parties. The impact of education on religiosity and voting preference is not working through migration, residential location or labor force participation. There is no statistically significant impact of education on men’s tendency to vote for Islamic parties and education does not influence the propensity to cast a vote in national elections for either men or women.
    Date: 2014–12
  8. By: Hanushek, Eric A.; Piopiunik, Marc; Wiederhold, Simon
    Abstract: Differences in teacher quality are commonly cited as a key determinant of the huge international student performance gaps. However, convincing evidence on this relationship is still lacking, in part because it is unclear how to measure teacher quality consistently across countries. We use unique international assessment data to investigate the role of teacher cognitive skills as one main dimension of teacher quality in explaining student outcomes. Our main identification strategy exploits exogenous variation in teacher cognitive skills attributable to international differences in relative wages of nonteacher public sector employees. Using student-level test score data, we find that teacher cognitive skills are an important determinant of international differences in student performance. Results are supported by fixed-effects estimation that uses within-country between-subject variation in teacher skills.
    Keywords: teacher cognitive skills; student performance; instrumental variable; PIAAC; PISA
    JEL: I20 H40 H52
    Date: 2014
  9. By: Buly A. Cardak (School of Economics, La Trobe University); Chris Ryan (Melbourne Institute of Applied Economic and Social Research, The University of Melbourne)
    Abstract: The effects of credit constraints on university participation are investigated in a setting where income contingent tuition loans are available to students. Students most likely to face credit constraints have the same or higher probability of attending university as all other students, given their high school achievement. A novel approach to handle potential bias arising from unobserved heterogeneity is proposed. An estimate of unobservable heterogeneity based on post-secondary plans reported during ninth grade is constructed. This estimate is found to explain university attendance but does not overturn results regarding the effects of credit constraints.
    Keywords: University participation, credit constraints, unobservables
    JEL: I21 I22 I28
    Date: 2014–11
  10. By: Marisa Coetzee (Department of Econmics, University of Stellenbosch)
    Abstract: In South Africa, school quality within the public school system is heterogeneous and highly stratified along race, socio-economic status and geographic location. Because of the lingering effect of racial segregation, schools which historically served the white minority and accordingly received a much higher endowment of inputs are still out-performing schools which historically served the black population, 20 years after the end of apartheid. Under-privileged black children who select into these former white schools are typically from richer households than their counterparts who remain in the former black part of the school system, although significantly poorer than their white peers. In this paper, I use longitudinal data from the National School Effectiveness Study which collected test scores and background information on children in grades 3, 4 and 5 in both school systems in order to estimate the effect of attending a historically white school on the numeracy and literacy scores of black children. The models are estimated using a value-added approach in order to control for unobserved child-specific heterogeneity in the form of individual ability by controlling for lagged test scores. In addition, the various household covariates available in the data are used to control for household-level differences among children. I find a slightly larger effect for attending a former white school in South Africa than has previously been estimated for private schools in India and Pakistan and assess the validity of the estimates using various robustness checks. I also discuss the potential bias which may remain.
    Keywords: education, school choice, South Africa, value-added models, National School Effectiveness Study (NSES)
    JEL: I22 I24 I25 I28 J13 O15
    Date: 2014
  11. By: Eric A. Hanushek; Marc Piopiunik; Simon Wiederhold
    Abstract: Differences in teacher quality are commonly cited as a key determinant of the huge international student performance gaps. However, convincing evidence on this relationship is still lacking, in part because it is unclear how to measure teacher quality consistently across countries. We use unique international assessment data to investigate the role of teacher cognitive skills as one main dimension of teacher quality in explaining student outcomes. Our main identification strategy exploits exogenous variation in teacher cognitive skills attributable to international differences in relative wages of nonteacher public sector employees. Using student-level test score data, we find that teacher cognitive skills are an important determinant of international differences in student performance. Results are supported by fixed-effects estimation that uses within-country between-subject variation in teacher skills.
    JEL: H4 I2 J2
    Date: 2014–12
  12. By: Lukasz Arendt; Agnieszka Rzenca
    Abstract: Transformation to post-industrial or knowledge-based economies causes changes in the structure of labour markets with growing demand on highly-qualified workforce. In XXI century human capital has become one of the most important production factors determining competitiveness and innovativeness of countries and regions. Creation of adequate stock of human capital requires smart investments. Therefore the higher education system, which is supposed to supply people with high-level skills and knowledge, plays crucial role in this process. The paper focuses on the linkage between higher education offer and labour market needs in the regional perspective. The goal of this paper is to analyse the extent to which higher education is able to response to demand-driven changes on the Polish labour market, especially in the Lodzkie region, till 2020. We use the newest employment forecast data to 2020 to present the development patterns of the labour demand in Poland and in the Lodzkie region. The analysis of data seems to confirm, that shifts in the sectoral and occupational structure of employment will follow the path consistent with the hypothesis of the skill-biased technical change. This implies growing demand on skills, and thus growing importance of the ability of higher education system to meet this challenge in coming years. We elaborate on the reforms of the Polish system of higher education that have been introduced since 1990ties. The main focus is put on the two groups of determinants - external, like the Bologna process, and introduction of the European Qualifications Framework, and internal - those, which are related to the specific socio-economic drivers at national and regional level. This analysis takes into account the outcomes of the recent debate, that emphasizes the linkage between higher education and labour market - it is generally acknowledged, that higher education should support labour market by adapting curricula and learning environment to the contemporary needs of the demand-side of this market. To assess this issues, we present unique data collected within primary research study carried out in the Lodzkie region (especially calculations of HRSTE and description of structure of education offer in the field of science and technology). We propose actions and recommendations to cope with the problem of matching higher education outcomes with the labour market needs. Keywords: labour market, human capital, higher education, education profile, labour demand forecasts
    JEL: I23 I25 J23 J24
    Date: 2014–11
  13. By: David Madden (University College Dublin)
    Abstract: Recent developments in the inequality literature has stressed the importance of inequality of opportunity as opposed to inequality of outcome. In this paper we investigate the presence of ex post inequality of opportunity in two measures of educational achievement for a representative sample of Irish 9 year olds. Students are partitioned into four groups according to maternal education levels and gaps in outcomes are calculated between each group. Quantile decompositions of the pairwise gaps reveal that almost half of the gaps can be explained by differences in characteristics between the groups Detailed decompositions show consistently significant effects for income, number of childrens' books in the home and maternal age.
    Keywords: Inequality of opportunity, quantile decomposition
    JEL: I24 D63 C21
    Date: 2014–11–25
  14. By: Thomsen, Stephan L. (NIW Hannover, Leibniz Universität Hannover); von Haaren, Friederike (NIW Hannover, Leibniz Universität Hannover)
    Abstract: Less than a decade ago, several German states introduced tuition fees for university education. Despite their comparatively low level, fees were perceived by the public to increase social injustice, and have been abolished. Whereas other studies have shown no effect on enrollment, we analyze the effects on students' budgets. To identify causal effects, we exploited the natural experiment established by the introduction of fees. They did not affect students' spending behavior independently of social background, but females experienced a small negative effect. Effects on other outcomes indicate that students increased their budgets only marginally; fees did not increase social inequality.
    Keywords: tuition fees, student spending, natural experiment, Germany
    JEL: I22 I28 H75
    Date: 2014–11
  15. By: Devitt, Niamh; Lyons, Sean; McCoy, Selina
    Abstract: As part of Ireland’s National Digital Strategy high-speed broadband is being rolled-out to all second-level schools to support greater use of ICT in education. This programme signals a move from slow and unreliable broadband connection for many schools to a guaranteed high-speed connection with technical support. Theoretically, this should allow for behaviours and pedagogies to adapt incorporating ICT into education. Research shows that integrating ICT into teaching and learning is a gradual process for most teachers and is influenced by a complex mix of socio-technical factors. Our dataset consists of survey data from teachers and principals from a sample of second-level schools. The survey collected factual and attitudinal variables including attitudes towards ICT integration, current availability of infrastructure and barriers to ICT use, before schools received high-speed broadband connectivity. We examine the factors influencing teachers’ attitudes to ICT and their perceived barriers in adopting new technologies in their day-to-day teaching. Analysis of this baseline period is essential in an iterative digital strategy, informing future strategies, targeting policy most effectively and achieving policy objectives. While attitudes towards the potential of high-speed broadband and use of ICT are consistently positive across sub-groups of schools and teachers, perceived barriers to ICT usage differ.
    Keywords: high-speed broadband, ICT barriers, second-level education, student learning, ICT integration
    JEL: H52 I21 L96
    Date: 2014–12–03
  16. By: Jonathan Guryan; James S. Kim; David M. Quinn
    Abstract: There are large gaps in reading skills by family income among school-aged children in the United States. Correlational evidence suggests that reading skills are strongly related to the amount of reading students do outside of school. Experimental evidence testing whether this relationship is causal is lacking. We report the results from a randomized evaluation of a summer reading program called Project READS, which induces students to read more during the summer by mailing ten books to them, one per week. Simple intent-to-treat estimates show that the program increased reading during the summer, and show significant effects on reading comprehension test scores in the fall for third grade girls but not for third grade boys or second graders of either gender. Analyses that take advantage of within-classroom random assignment and cross-classroom variation in treatment effects show evidence that reading more books generates increases in reading comprehension skills, particularly when students read carefully enough to be able to answer basic questions about the books they read, and particularly for girls.
    JEL: I24 J24
    Date: 2014–11
  17. By: Chrysanthi Balomenou; Aniko Kalman; Konstantinos Kolovos
    Abstract: In the theoretical part of our paper focused on a) The role of the Knowledge / Universities as a leader of Technological change ? Knowledge transfer dynamics and its influence on Regional Development, b) the Entrepreneurship education: The role of the Entrepreneurial University, c) Knowledge Spillovers and regional Innovation System (RIS): empirical evidence of some European Regions, d) the current situation in Greek Higher Education, focusing on the New Educational Law and especially on the plan "Athena" of the Ministry of Education, for the restructure / reallocation of the Greek Universities and Technological Institutions e) The new Law for Research Technology and Innovation in Greece (Horizon 2020 program) c) The Hungarian case study. In the empirical part of our paper, we are studding the restructure / reallocation of the Greek Universities and Technological Institutions. Our research methodology, based on the data extracted from targeted questionnaires addressed both to Greek entrepreneurs and Greek universities ? Scientific Institutions, attempts to show on one hand how the Universities assess the business environment and their new role in the relevant new institutional framework and on the other hand how the Greek industries evaluate their cooperation with the universities sector and their new role in terms of supporting the local entrepreneurship, as well. The used method for analyzing the results is the one of SPSS (descriptive statistics, correlation ? convexity indicators). The main findings coming by the processing of the statistical data of our scientific research, reveal that in crisis period the universities can find a new source of funding by "advertising" their main mission, which is the diffusion of Knowledge, and especially, the innovative one that enterprises need, in order to succeed and to overcome the crisis bad effects. Thus, we can observe that the results of our empirical analysis are strongly related to the relevant literature presented in the theoretical part of our paper. Finally, considerable general conclusions, policy proposals and questions/ challenges for further research will be presented at the end of our study. Finally, we would like to draw your attention on the fact that during this period is taking palace an ongoing relevant research in Hungary and we are expecting the results in order to be able to make a comparative analysis and consequently the appropriate SWOT ANALYSIS.
    Keywords: Universities; Triple Helix Theory; Local Entrepreneurship; Endogenous regional growth; cross country cooperation ? collaboration in knowledge economy O30; 031; 0;32;O33; O38; R11; R58
    Date: 2014–11
  18. By: Daniel Horn (Institute of Economics, Center for Economic and Regional Studies, Hungarian Academy of Sciences and ELTE, Department of Economics)
    Abstract: Although apprenticeship training has been praised for its effectiveness in smoothing the school-to-work transition of non-college bound students, most studies rely on cross country or cross track comparisons. This study compares apprenticeship training students with non-apprentices within educational track using a rich database and a unique set of observable individual level characteristics as well as local labor market fixed effects to control for the potential selection bias. The results show that there are no significant differences in employment chances between apprentices and non-apprentices within just a year after graduation. Although, in small subsamples of the population, significant differences can be found, these are most likely due unobserved heterogeneity. However, even if these observed differences are unbiased, they are more likely due to the superior screening of the larger firms rather than their superior training.
    Keywords: apprenticeship training, employment, screening, school-to-work transition, panel data
    JEL: J08 I21 I24 J24
    Date: 2014–08
  19. By: Silves J.C. Moreira (Faculdade de Economia, Universidade do Porto); Pedro Cosme Vieira (Faculdade de Economia, Universidade do Porto); Aurora A.C. Teixeira (CEF.UP, Faculdade de Economia, Universidade do Porto; INESC TEC; OBEGEF)
    Abstract: Despite the importance of human capital stock to the economic growth of countries, its analysis has been restricted to more developed countries or to cross-country samples from a set of countries. Due to a lack of estimates for this variable in less developed countries, it has not been possible to assess the importance of this determinant for their growth and development. The aim of this study is to partly fill this gap, determining human capital stock in terms of average formal schooling for the Cape Verdean economy in the period 1950-2012. To this end, we resorted to an adaption of the methodology proposed by Barro and Lee (1993), based on past schooling values. We found that between 1950 and 2012 the Cape Verdean working-age population showed a gradual improvement in the levels of schooling, rising from 0.7 years of schooling in the 1950s to 5.4 in late 2012. However, this means that, in each year, the average years of schooling increased only 0.08 years, meaning that, in net terms and on average, only 7.6% of the working-age population was attending some level of formal education. The availability of a time series of number of average schooling years in Cape Verde opens up possibilities for assessing the impact of human capital on the country’s economic growth.
    Keywords: Human capital, measurement, economic growth, Cape Verde
    JEL: J24 I20 C19 O40
    Date: 2014–11
  20. By: Juan M. Villa
    Abstract: Abstract Within social protection, antipoverty transfer programmes have significantly emerged in developing countries since the late 1990s. The effects of long-term participation and the assessment of the response of children's human capital formation to different levels of exposure are still unclear. This paper initially takes into consideration the Baland and Robinson (2000) human capital investment model to look into the economics of the length of exposure to antipoverty transfers. The model is presented in a framework shaped by the participation of households in a human development conditional cash transfer programme (CCT). An empirical contribution is made by estimating a dose-response function following Hirano and Imbens (2004). In this empirical setting, the length of exposure to Colombia's Familias en Accion CCT programme is employed as a continuous treatment affecting parental investment in children's human capital. The theoretical and empirical results show that a longer exposure to antipoverty programmes leads to a higher accumulation of years of education and school registration rates.
    Date: 2014
  21. By: María F. Prada; Sergio S. Urzúa
    Abstract: We investigate the role of mechanical ability as another dimension that, jointly with cognitive and socio-emotional, affects schooling decisions and labor market outcomes. Using a Roy model with a factor structure and data from the NLSY79, we show that the labor market positively rewards mechanical ability. However, in contrast to the other dimensions, mechanical ability reduces the likelihood of attending four-year college. We find that, on average, for individuals with high levels of mechanical and low levels of cognitive and socio-emotional ability, not attending four-year college is the alternative associated with the highest hourly wage (ages 25-30).
    JEL: C38 J24
    Date: 2014–12
  22. By: del Bono, Emilia; Francesconi, Marco
    Abstract: Using large longitudinal survey data from the UK Millennium Cohort Study, this paper estimates the eect of maternal time inputs on early child development. We nd that maternal time is a quantitatively important determinant of skill formation and that its eect declines with child age. There is evidence of a long shadow of the eect of early maternal time inputs on later outcomes, especially in the case of cognitive skill development. In the case of non-cognitive development, this eect disappears when we account for skill persistence.
    Keywords: cognitive and non- cognitive skill formation; early interventions; education production functions
    JEL: I20 J15 J24
    Date: 2014–11
  23. By: Seki, Mai
    Abstract: Existing studies on the returns to college selectivity have mixed results, mainly due to the difficulty of controlling for selection into more-selective colleges based on unobserved ability. Moreover, researchers have not considered graduate degree attainment in the analysis of labour market returns to college selectivity. In this paper, I estimate the effect of a U.S. four-year undergraduate program’s selectivity on wages, including graduate degree attainment. I control for both observed and unobserved selection by extending the model of Carneiro, Hansen and Heckman (2003). There are two channels through which college selectivity affects future labour market outcomes. The first is the wage returns to college selectivity conditional on graduate degree attainment. The second is the effect of college selectivity on the probability of graduate degree attainment and the wage returns to graduate degree attainment. The results show that the former effects dominate the latter, but both are small in magnitude.
    Keywords: returns to education, heterogeneous treatment effect, selection, data combination
    JEL: I21 C30
    Date: 2014–11–25
  24. By: F. Alejandro Villagómez (Division of Economics, CIDE)
    Abstract: In an increasingly complex world, individuals have a more limited ability to take optimal decisions due to the lack of knowledge of basic financial concepts. This leads to severe mistakes in key decisions throughout an individual's life. Moreover, financial illiteracy is greater in the young population, which is financially less sophisticated. Since 2012, the OECD included a fourth section on financial literacy in the PISA test. In this paper we study the level of financial literacy of Mexicans between 15 and 18 years old attending high schooñ. We designed a survey following the OECD methodology and the approach of Lusardi and Mitchell, and applied it to students in Mexico City as well as the State of Mexico. In general, the results show low levels of financial literacy, mainly in women and students in the public school system.
    JEL: D91 D14
    Date: 2014–08
  25. By: Solga, Heike; Protsch, Paula; Ebner, Christian; Brzinsky-Fay, Christian
    Abstract: Germany is widely known for its high-quality vocational education and training (VET) system. The two key features of that system are (a) firm-based training programs accompanied by a schoolbased component (of one to two days per week), in which apprentices acquire upper secondary general education in core subjects (like math and German) and theoretical knowledge in their training occupation. This duality of practical and theoretical knowledge acquired at the workplace and at vocational schools is (b) accompanied by the private-public duality in the governance structure (i.e., public governance of the vocational schools, provide governance of the firm-based training). In the recent recession, this so-called dual system has received much international attention, for instance in the US, UK, or Spain. Whereas youth unemployment has increased enormously in the last years in many (European) countries, this has not been the case in Germany. From the outside, therefore, it may look as if Germany's low youth unemployment rate is to be credited to the dual system. That observation, however, is only partly correct, as we will discuss in this paper. The aim of this paper is to provide information on the German VET system, enabling international readers to better understand its institutional setting, its strengths and appeal, but also its challenges and weaknesses. Therefore, the paper is structured as follows. We will start with the institutional configuration of the German VET system (Section 2), describing its institutional prerequisites and its different sectors. As we will see, there is more to Germany's VET system than the well-known dual system. We will proceed by presenting some historical developments, necessary to understand the longevity of Germany's VET system and the ways in which it has dealt with the challenges of transitioning towards a "knowledge-based" society (Section 3). In Section 4, we will discuss both the potential and the problems of the apprenticeship system with regard to including low-achieving or disabled youth. Afterwards, we will briefly compare Germany to the dual systems of Austria, Denmark and Switzerland (Section 5). This comparison will reveal that the framework of a dual system allows for a variety of configurations - an information that might be of special interest to international readers who want to better understand Germany's "exceptionalism" regarding the divide between vocational and general higher education. We will conclude the paper with some findings regarding the importance of the German VET system in terms of labor market entry (Section 6) and some lessons that can be learnt from the insights presented in the paper.
    Date: 2014
  26. By: Valeria Cirillo (Department of Statistical Sciences, Sapienza University of Rome); Mario Pianta (Department of Economics, Society & Politics, Università di Urbino "Carlo Bo"); Leopoldo Nascia (Istituto Nazionale di Statistica)
    Abstract: This paper investigates the role of wages, education and innovation in shaping employment structures in manufacturing and services of five European countries (Germany, France, Spain, Italy and United Kingdom), with specific respect to skills in the long term (1999-2011). Using data on employment by skill level and several measures of industries’ technological efforts provided by four waves of Community Innovation Survey, we study the relationship between micro and macro factors and employment dynamics by skill. As micro factors, we consider the role of education and wages by employee; as macro elements we study the role of technologies and demand shaping job growth by skill group. Relying on a sectoral demand curve deriving from a translong cost function, we empirically estimate the relationship between wages, education, technologies, demand and employment. The results reveal that skills are differently affected by education, wages and technologies and a variety of employment patterns has to be detected. In 1999-2011, manufacturing shows a pattern of relative skill upgrading; conversely a smoothed polarizing trend is detected in services. While a process of relative skill upgrading is detected in manufacturing; conversely a smoothed polarizing trend is detected in services.
    Keywords: Innovation; Labor markets, Wages, Education.
    JEL: J31 O30
    Date: 2014
  27. By: Oscarina Conceição (DINÂMIA-CET, University Institute of Lisbon, Lisbon, Portugal & Polytechnic Institute of Cavado and Ave); Ana Paula Faria (Universidade do Minho - NIPE); Margarida Fontes (LNEG – National Laboratory of Energy and Geology. Lisbon, Portugal & DINÂMIA-CET, University Institute of Lisbon, Lisbon, Portugal)
    Abstract: Using a unique self-collected dataset that comprehends the population of research-based spin-offs created in Portugal from 1995 until to 2007, we investigate the location choices of these firms. In order to do so we control for both university- and region-related mechanisms. Our results suggest that the latter play a lesser role than university-related mechanisms. Although the availability of qualified human capital and urbanization economies seem to exert some effect on the location choices of research-based spin-offs, our results suggest that the quality and prestige of the universities located in a region, as well as the presence of university-affiliated incubators and/or university research parks have a stronger impact on the intensity of RBSO location across regions.
    Keywords: academic spin-offs; firm creation; location decision; count data analysis
    Date: 2014

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