nep-hrm New Economics Papers
on Human Capital and Human Resource Management
Issue of 2006‒05‒13
ten papers chosen by
Fabio Sabatini
Universita degli Studi di Roma, La Sapienza

  1. Educational Qualification, Work Status and Entrepreneurship in Italy: an Exploratory Analysis By Fabio Sabatini
  2. Peer Effects in European Primary Schools: Evidence from PIRLS By Andreas Ammermueller; Jörn-Steffen Pishcke
  3. Income Shocks and Gender Gaps in Education: Evidence from Uganda By Björkman, Martina
  4. Education, Growth, and Redistribution in the Presence of Capital Flight By Areendam Chanda; Debajyoti Chakrabarty; Chetan Ghate
  5. Increasing Returns to Education: Theory and Evidence By Alison Booth; Melvyn Coles; Xiaodong Gong
  6. Measures of human capital: A review of the literature By Trinh Le; John Gibson; Les Oxley
  7. Do High School Exit Exams Influence Educational Attainment or Labor Market Performance? By Thomas S. Dee; Brian A. Jacob
  8. Non-pecuniary returns to higher education: The effect on smoking intensity in the UK By Alfonso Miranda; Massimiliano Bratti
  9. Entrepreneurship, Growth and Restructuring By David B. Audretsch; Max Keilbach
  10. Age Structure of the Workforce and Firm Performance. By Grund, Christian; Westergård-Nielsen, Niels

  1. By: Fabio Sabatini
    Abstract: This paper provides an exploratory analysis on the relationship between educational qualification and work status in Italy, with a particular focus on entrepreneurs and self-employed workers. Rough data are drawn from four waves (1995, 1998, 2002, and 2004) of the Survey of Household Income and Wealth (SHIW) carried out by the Bank of Italy. Stylised facts emerging from the empirical evidence are the surprisingly low level of educational qualification exhibited by employers and the tendency of workers holding higher levels of educational qualification not to chose to undertake an entrepreneurial activity. Such workers generally become members of the arts and professions, or take up a career as high-level employees.
    Keywords: Education, Work status, Employment, Self-employment, Entrepreneurship, Human capital
    JEL: I21 J23 J24 M13
    Date: 2006–05
  2. By: Andreas Ammermueller; Jörn-Steffen Pishcke
    Abstract: We estimate peer effects for fourth graders in six European countries. The identification relies on variation across classes within schools. We argue that classes within primary schools are formed roughly randomly with respect to family background. Similar to previous studies, we find sizeable estimates of peer effects in standard OLS specifications. The size of the estimate is much reduced within schools. This could be explained either by selection into schools or by measurement error in the peer background variable. When we correct for measurement error we find within school estimates close to the original OLS estimates. Our results suggest that the peer effect is modestly large, measurement error is important in our survey data, and selection plays little role in biasing peer effects estimates. We find no significant evidence of non-linear peer effects.
    JEL: I21 J24
    Date: 2006–05
  3. By: Björkman, Martina (Institute for International Economic Studies, Stockholm University)
    Abstract: This paper uses exogenous variation in rainfall across districts in Uganda to estimate the causal effects of household income shocks to in children’s enrollment and cognitive skills conditional on gender. I find negative income shocks to have large negative and highly significant effects on female enrollment in primary schools and the effect grows stronger for older girls. The effect on boys’ enrollment is smaller and only marginally significant. Moreover, I find that a negative income shock has an adverse effect on test scores in general and test scores of female students in particular. The results imply that households respond to income shocks by varying the quantity and quality of girls’ education while boys are to a larger extent sheltered – a finding consistent with a model where parents’ values of child labor differ across sexes.
    Keywords: Rainfall; education; test scores; gender
    JEL: D13 I21 O12
    Date: 2006–03–02
  4. By: Areendam Chanda; Debajyoti Chakrabarty; Chetan Ghate
    Abstract: The conventional wisdom in the literature on capital controls and growth argues that capital controls increase the ability of a government to tax capitalists which proves detrimental for growth. To address this issue, we construct an OLG model to study the effect of capital controls on human capital investments and the incidence of redistributive taxation in a growing economy. We argue to the contrary: i.e., the conventional wisdowm linking higher capital controls to lower growth is reproduced only when an economy is sufficiently developed. For under-developed countries, higher capital controls can induce balanced growth, and the wisdom does not apply. When the model is augmented with a subsistence sector, we show that if workers are sufficiently poor, then workers do not invest in human capital. Hence, a modern sector does not exist. Higher capital controls however makes it feasible for a modern sector to exist by lowering the threshold income level required by workers to invest in human capital. Our results are consistent with recent evidence which show that, while financial liberalizations are associated with significant increases in growth, the effect is larger for countries with high education levels. Our results are also consistent with empirical evidence that argues that liberalizing the capital account positively affects growth only after a country has achieved a certain degree of economic development.
  5. By: Alison Booth (Economics Program, RSSS, ANU); Melvyn Coles; Xiaodong Gong
    Abstract: We model educational investment and labor supply in a competitive economy with home and market production. Heterogeneous workers are assumed to have different productivities both at home and in the workplace. We show that there are increasing returns to education at the labor market participation margin, and that these depend directly on the elasticity of labor supply with respect to wages. Thus the increasing returns to education problem will be most relevant for women or other types with large enough home productivity. We estimate a three equation recursive model of working hours, wages and years of schooling, and find empirical support for the main predictions of the model.
    Keywords: returns to education, home production, labor supply
    JEL: H24 J13 J24 J31 J42
    Date: 2006
  6. By: Trinh Le; John Gibson; Les Oxley (The Treasury)
    Abstract: Human capital is increasingly believed to play an important role in the growth process, however, adequately measuring its stock remains controversial. This paper identifies three general approaches to human capital measurement; cost-based, income-based and education-based, and presents a critical review of the theories and their applications to data from a range of countries. Emphasis on empirical evidence will be given to the case of New Zealand.
    Keywords: human capital, economic growth
    JEL: C52 F43 N10 O41
    Date: 2005–11
  7. By: Thomas S. Dee; Brian A. Jacob
    Abstract: State requirements that high school graduates pass exit exams were the leading edge of the movement towards standards-based reform and continue to be adopted and refined by states today. In this study, we present new empirical evidence on how exit exams influenced educational attainment and labor market experiences using data from the 2000 Census and the National Center for Education Statistics' Common Core of Data (CCD). Our results suggest that the effects of these reforms have been heterogeneous. For example, our analysis of the Census data suggests that exit exams significantly reduced the probability of completing high school, particularly for black students. Similarly, our analysis of grade-level dropout data from the CCD indicates that Minnesota's recent exit exam increased the dropout rate in urban and high-poverty school districts as well as in those with a relatively large concentration of minority students. This increased risk of dropping out was concentrated among 12th grade students. However, we also found that Minnesota's exit exam lowered the dropout rate in low-poverty and suburban school districts, particularly among students in the 10th and 11th grades. These results suggest that exit exams have the capacity to improve student and school performance but also appear to have exacerbated the inequality in educational attainment.
    JEL: I2 J3
    Date: 2006–05
  8. By: Alfonso Miranda (Keele University, Centre for Economic Research and School of Economic and Management Studies); Massimiliano Bratti (Department of Economics, Business and Statistics, University of Milan)
    Abstract: In this paper we investigate whether higher education (HE) produces non-pecuniary returns via a reduction in the consumption of health-damaging substances. In particular, the paper focuses on studying the smoking intensity of British individuals. We use data on current smokers from the 1970 British Cohort Study and estimate endogenous switching count models for cigarette consumption. Results show that HE is endogenous with smoking. Once endogeneity is controlled for, HE is found to have a higher negative effect on smoking than in models where it is treated as exogenous.
    Keywords: Endogenous switching, count data, higher education, smoking, UK
    JEL: C35 I12 I21
    Date: 2006–04
  9. By: David B. Audretsch; Max Keilbach
    Date: 2006–05
  10. By: Grund, Christian (Department of Business and Economics); Westergård-Nielsen, Niels (Department of Economics, Aarhus School of Business)
    Abstract: In this contribution, we examine the interrelation between corporate age structures and firm performance. In particular, we address the issues, whether firms with young rather than older employees are successful and whether firms with homogeneous or heterogeneous workforces are doing well. Several theoretical approaches are discussed with respect to these questions and divergent hypotheses are derived. Using Danish linked employer-employee data, we find that both mean age and dispersion of age in firms are inversely u-shaped related to firm performance.
    Keywords: Firm performance; Corporate age structures; Demographic change
    JEL: J21 L25 M54
    Date: 2005–01–01

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