Now showing 1 - 10 of 21
  • Publication
    A multi-country study of inter-generational educational mobility
    (University College Dublin. Institute for the Study of Social Change (Geary Institute), 2003) ; ;
    This paper analyses intergenerational educational mobility using survey data for twenty countries. We find that a number of interesting patterns emerge. Estimating a measure of mobility as movement and an index of mobility as equality of opportunity we find that while these two measures are positively correlated, the correlation is far from perfect. Examining the link with educational inequality we find evidence which suggests an inverse relationship between mobility and inequality consistent with egalitarian theory. The relationship between mobility appears to be weak, high returns to education do not depress mobility, as some human capital theories would suggest. Mobility appears to be somewhat higher for men whereas equality is much the same for both sexes. There is evidence that mobility as equality of opportunity has risen consistent with modernization theory. There is no evidence that expansion of third level education has led to a fall in the penalty associated with having a low educated parent. Estimates of marginal mobility are quite different from average mobility.
      1407
  • Publication
    A multi-country study of inter-generational educational mobility
    (University College Dublin. School of Economics, 2003-05) ; ;
    This paper analyses intergenerational educational mobility using survey data for twenty countries. We find that a number of interesting patterns emerge. Estimating a measure of mobility as movement and an index of mobility as equality of opportunity we find that while these two measures are positively correlated, the correlation is far from perfect. Examining the link with educational inequality we find evidence which suggests an inverse relationship between mobility and inequality consistent with egalitarian theory. The relationship between mobility appears to be weak, high returns to education do not depress mobility, as some human capital theories would suggest. Mobility appears to be somewhat higher for men whereas equality is much the same for both sexes. There is evidence that mobility as equality of opportunity has risen consistent with modernization theory. There is no evidence that expansion of third level education has led to a fall in the penalty associated with having a low educated parent. Estimates of marginal mobility are quite different from average mobility.
      373
  • Publication
    Monotonicity and the Roy model
    (University College Dublin. Institute for the Study of Social Change (Geary Institute), 2002-05) ;
    In this note we study the implications on a bivariate normal Roy Model of two sets of monotonicity hypotheses proposed recently by Manski and Pepper (2000). In that simple context, we show that these hypotheses imply strong restrictions on the correlations structure between the decision and the rewards.
      344
  • Publication
    Does it pay to attend a prestigious university?
    (University College Dublin. Institute for the Study of Social Change (Geary Institute), 2003-07) ;
    This paper provides evidence of heterogeneity in the returns to higher education in the UK. Attending the most prestigious universities leads to a wage premium of up to 6% for males. The rise in participation in higher education also led to a greater sorting of students and an increase in the returns to quality. These results somehow justify the recent introduction of top-up fees. Additionally, identification strategy matters and OLS estimates may be severely biased. However, our estimates, based on propensity score matching, are imprecise due to the thinness of the common support.
      321
  • Publication
    Subject specific league tables and students' application decisions
    (University College Dublin. Geary Institute, 2015-03-13) ;
    Do applicants to higher education rely on expert judgement about the quality of the course when applying? Using application data across UK universities over a period of 8 years, we investigate how league tables affect prospective students’ application decisions. We use subject specific ranking rather than the commonly used institution level ranking. We find that a one standard deviation change in the subject-level ranking score of an institution is associated with on average a 4.3% increase in application numbers per faculty. This effect is particularly pronounced among faculties with the best scores, and overseas applicants. Limits to the number of applications have increased the preponderance of league tables.
      645
  • Publication
    The impact of parental income and education on the schooling of their children
    (University College Dublin. Geary Institute, 2010-07-01) ; ; ;
    This paper addresses the intergenerational transmission of education and investigates the extent to which early school leaving (at age 16) may be due to variations in parental background. An important contribution of the paper is to distinguish between the causal effects of parental income and parental education levels. Least squares estimation reveals conventional results – weak effects of income (when the child is 16), stronger effects of maternal education than paternal, and stronger effects on sons than daughters. We find that the education effects remain significant even when household income is included. However, when we use instrumental variable methods to simultaneously account for the endogeneity of parental education and paternal income, only maternal education remains significant (for daughters only) and becomes stronger. These estimates are consistent to various set of instruments. The impact of paternal income varies between specifications but become insignificant in our preferred specification. Our results provide limited evidence that policies alleviating income constraints at age 16 can alter schooling decisions but that policies increasing permanent income would lead to increased participation (especially for daughters). There is also evidence of intergenerational transmissions of education choice from mothers to daughters.
      1235
  • Publication
    Does education raise productivity, or just reflect it?
    (University College Dublin. Institute for the Study of Social Change (Geary Institute), 2002-12-23) ; ; ;
    It is clear that education has an important effect on wages paid in the labour market However it not clear whether this is due to the role that education plays in raising the productivity of workers (the human capital explanation) or whether education simply reflects the ability of the worker (through a signalling role). In this paper we describe and implement, using a variety of UK datasets, a number of tests from the existing literature for discriminating between the two explanations. We find little support for signalling ideas in these tests. However, we have severe reservations about these results because our doubts about the power of these tests and the appropriateness of the data. We propose an alternative test, based on the response of some individuals to a change in education incentives offered to other individuals caused by the changes in the minimum school leaving age in the seventies. Using this idea we find that data in the UK appears to strongly support the human capital explanation.
      1381
  • Publication
    Mother's education and birth weight
    (University College Dublin. Geary Institute, 2007-06-12) ;
    Low birth weight has considerable short and long-term consequences and leads to high costs to the individual and society even in a developed economy. Low birth weight is partially a consequence of choices made by the mother pre- and during pregnancy. Thus policies affecting these choices could have large returns. Using British data, maternal education is found to be positively correlated with birth weight. We identify a causal effect of education using the 1947 reform of the minimum school leaving age. Change in compulsory school leaving age has been previously used as an instrument, but has been criticised for mostly picking up time trends. Here, we demonstrate that the policy effects differ by social background and hence provide identification across cohorts but also within cohort. We find modest but heterogenous positive effects of maternal education on birth weight with an increase from the baseline weight ranging from 2% to 6%.
      191
  • Publication
    Parental education and child’s education : a natural experiment
    (University College Dublin. School of Economics, 2004-05)
    Is the intergenerational educational link due to nature or nurture? In order to answer this dilemma, this paper identifies the effect of parental education on their offspring’s schooling attainment using a discontinuity in the parental educational attainment. The discontinuity stems from changes in the minimum school leaving age legislation which took place in the Seventies in Britain. This strategy identifies the effect of parental schooling only for parents with a lower taste for education and may not reflect the general social returns of parental education. However, since policies are more likely to target children at risk of not maximising their educational potential, the estimates are of interest. Contrary to recent evidence, we find a positive effect of both parents education on their children’s schooling achievements when focusing on natural parents only. Step parents have no or a negative impact on children’s education. In most cases, the endogeneity of parental education is rejected. These estimates suggest substantial social returns to education for same-sex parent. The estimates are robust to the introduction of additional controls for income, labour force participation, fertility and neighbourhood quality, indicating that the effect of parental education is direct.
      302