Thursday, 14 February 2013

Educational policies in a long-run perspective

an article by Michela Braga and Daniele Checchi (University of Milan) and Elena Meschi (University Ca' Foscari, Venice) published in Economic Policy Volume 28 Issue 73 (January 2013)


In this paper we study the effects of educational reforms on school attainment.

We construct a dataset of relevant reforms that occurred at the national level over the last century, and match individual information from 24 European countries to the most likely set-up faced when individual educational choices were undertaken.

Our identification strategy relies on temporal and geographical variations in the institutional arrangements, controlling for time/country fixed effects, as well as for country specific time trend. By characterising each group of reforms for their impact on mean years of education, educational inequality and intergenerational persistence, we show an ideal policy menu which has been available to policy-makers.

We distinguish between groups of policies that are either ‘inclusive’ or ‘selective’, depending on their diminishing or augmenting impact on inequality and persistence.

Finally, we correlate these reform measures to political coalitions prevailing in parliament, finding support for the idea that left-wing parties support reforms that are inclusive, while right-wing parties prefer selective ones.

This paper is part of a larger research project on ‘Growing Inequalities’ Impacts (GINI)' financed by the European Commission under the 7th Framework Programme (contract no. 244592).
This paper was presented at the 55th Panel Meeting of Economic Policy in Copenhagen.

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