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Flexibility at a Cost: Should Governments Stimulate Tertiary Education for Adults?
Stockholm University. (SOFI)
Umeå University, Faculty of Social Sciences, Umeå School of Business and Economics (USBE), Economics. Umeå University, Faculty of Social Sciences, Centre for Population Studies (CPS). (Economic Policy Network / ALC)
2015 (English)Report (Refereed)
Abstract [en]

Most OECD countries experience high unemployment rates and declining growth in higher educational attainment. An often suggested government policy is therefore to allocate resources towards formal schooling for adults. However, returns on such investments are uncertain and the foregone earnings are potentially large. We use Swedish population register data from 1982 to 2011 to estimate average long run earnings returns on higher education for 29- to 55-year-olds who enrolled 1992-1993. We find substantial positive estimates, but these only fully emerge after approximately ten years. Nevertheless, calculations indicate that the benefits for society exceed the costs also under fairly pessimistic assumptions.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
Bonn: IZA , 2015. , 46 p.
, IZA Discussion Papers, 9047
Keyword [en]
Adult Education, Human Capital, Earnings
National Category
Research subject
URN: urn:nbn:se:umu:diva-103321OAI: diva2:812870
Riksbankens JubileumsfondSwedish Research Council, 2006-21576- 36119-66
Available from: 2015-05-20 Created: 2015-05-20 Last updated: 2015-08-07Bibliographically approved

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Westerlund, Olle
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EconomicsCentre for Population Studies (CPS)

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