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Are returns to education on the decline in Venezuela and does Mission Sucre have a role to play?

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  • Gonzalez, Naihobe
  • Oyelere, Ruth Uwaifo

Abstract

Anecdotal evidence points to a falling standard of living for the educated in Venezuela. During this same period, President Hugo Chávez implemented several education reforms. We focus on a major university education reform known as Mission Sucre and its potential impact on returns to university education. First, we show that returns to education decreased significantly in Venezuela from 2002 to 2008. Subsequently, we explore the impact of the program on non-program participants and provide evidence that a substantial part of the falling returns at the tertiary level can be linked to Mission Sucre. Our results suggest that the reform created a negative externality on students who did not participate in the program, leading to a 2.7 percentage point decline in returns to university education for non-Mission Sucre students in the 23–28 age cohort.

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Bibliographic Info

Article provided by Elsevier in its journal Economics of Education Review.

Volume (Year): 30 (2011)
Issue (Month): 6 ()
Pages: 1348-1369

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Handle: RePEc:eee:ecoedu:v:30:y:2011:i:6:p:1348-1369

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Web page: http://www.elsevier.com/locate/econedurev

Related research

Keywords: Human capital; Economic impact; Rate of return; Educational economics;

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References

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  1. Hsieh, Chang-Tai & Miguel, Edward & Ortega, Daniel & Rodriguez, Francisco, 2009. "The Price of Political Opposition: Evidence from Venezuela's Maisanta," Center for International and Development Economics Research, Working Paper Series qt8dx9n9r7, Center for International and Development Economics Research, Institute for Business and Economic Research, UC Berkeley.
  2. Belton M. Fleisher & Klara Sabirianova Peter & Xiaojun Wang, 2004. "Returns to Skills and the Speed of Reforms: Evidence from Central and Eastern Europe, China, and Russia," William Davidson Institute Working Papers Series 2004-703, William Davidson Institute at the University of Michigan.
  3. Philip R. Lane & Aaron Tornell, 1999. "The Voracity Effect," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 89(1), pages 22-46, March.
  4. Harry Anthony Patrinos & Chris Sakellariou, 2006. "Economic volatility and returns to education in Venezuela: 1992-2002," Applied Economics, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 38(17), pages 1991-2005.
  5. Uwaifo Oyelere, Ruth, 2010. "Africa's education enigma? The Nigerian story," Journal of Development Economics, Elsevier, vol. 91(1), pages 128-139, January.
  6. Douglas Staiger & James H. Stock, 1997. "Instrumental Variables Regression with Weak Instruments," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 65(3), pages 557-586, May.
  7. Gorodnichenko, Yuriy & Sabirianova Peter, Klara, 2005. "Returns to schooling in Russia and Ukraine: A semiparametric approach to cross-country comparative analysis," Journal of Comparative Economics, Elsevier, vol. 33(2), pages 324-350, June.
  8. Baland, Jean-Marie & Francois, Patrick, 2000. "Rent-seeking and resource booms," Journal of Development Economics, Elsevier, vol. 61(2), pages 527-542, April.
  9. Kugler, Bernardo & Psacharopoulos, George, 1989. "Earnings and education in Argentina: an analysis of the 1985 Buenos Aires Household Survey," Economics of Education Review, Elsevier, vol. 8(4), pages 353-365, August.
  10. Psacharopoulos, George & Alam, Asad, 1991. "Earnings and education in Venezuela: An update from the 1987 household survey," Economics of Education Review, Elsevier, vol. 10(1), pages 29-36, March.
  11. Uwaifo Oyelere, Ruth, 2008. "Understanding Low Average Returns to Education in Africa: The Role of Heterogeneity across Education Levels and the Importance of Political and Economic Reforms," IZA Discussion Papers 3766, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).
  12. Lane, Philip R & Tornell, Aaron, 1996. " Power, Growth, and the Voracity Effect," Journal of Economic Growth, Springer, vol. 1(2), pages 213-41, June.
  13. Patrinos, Harry Anthony & Ridao-Cano, Cris & Sakellariou, Chris, 2006. "Estimating the returns to education : accounting for heterogeneity in ability," Policy Research Working Paper Series 4040, The World Bank.
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