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Correspondencia de economía política y decisiones de educación en las familias después de la descentralización


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  • Rodríguez, Catherine

    (Facultad de Economía, Universidad de los Andes)


This paper evaluates the effects that the decentralization reforms implemented in Colombia during the early nineties had on the quality of public schools. Through panel data techniques at the school level we find that, in the Colombian context, political economy trade-offs such as low ability of local governments, unfunded mandates or local capture are not important factors in the determination of decentralization results. Conversely, accounting for the changes in households’ drop-out decisions can significantly alter the interpretation of such results implying the importance for future impact policy evaluation to directly take them into account. Specifically, allowing for households’ schooling decisions to change, we find that the total effect of the reforms decreased the quality of public schooling. However, controlling for the significant changes in the drop-out rate of public school students that took place after the reforms were undertaken, we find that the quality of public schools actually improved.// Este artículo evalúa los efectos que las reformas de descentralización aplicadas en Colombia a principios del decenio de los noventa del siglo XX tuvieron en la calidad de las escuelas públicas. Mediante técnicas de datos de panel escolares descubrimos que, en el contexto colombiano, las relaciones de correspondencia (trade-off) de economía política, como la poca capacidad de los gobiernos locales, los mandatos no financiados o la captación local, no son factores importantes en la determinación de los resultados de descentralización. Por otra parte, considerar los cambios en las decisiones de las familias de abandonar los estudios puede alterar significativamente la interpretación de dichos resultados, lo que sugiere la importancia de tomar directamente en cuenta estos cambios en la evaluación del efecto a futuro de las políticas. Específicamente, al permitir que las decisiones de educación de las familias cambien, descubrimos que el efecto total de las reformas disminuyó la calidad de la educación pública. Sin embargo, al controlar por los cambios significativos en la disminución de la tasa de deserción escolar entre alumnos de escuelas públicas que se presentó después de emprenderse las reformas, encontramos que, en realidad, la calidad de las escuelas públicas mejoró.

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Bibliographic Info

Article provided by Fondo de Cultura Económica in its journal El Trimestre Económico.

Volume (Year): LXXVII (4) (2010)
Issue (Month): 308 (octubre-diciembre)
Pages: 977-1006

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Handle: RePEc:elt:journl:v:77:y:2010:i:308:p:977-1006

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Keywords: descentralización; educación; correspondencias de economía política; divisiones de deserción escolar;

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Cited by:
  1. Fabio Sánchez Torres & Mónica Pachón, 2013. "Descentralización, Esfuerzo Fiscal y Progreso Social en Colombia en el Nivel Local, 1994-2009: ¿Por qué Importa la Política Nacional?," DOCUMENTOS CEDE, UNIVERSIDAD DE LOS ANDES-CEDE 011468, UNIVERSIDAD DE LOS ANDES-CEDE.
  2. Fabio Sánchez Torres & Mónica Pachón, 2013. "Decentralization, Fiscal Effort and Social Progress in Colombia at the Municipal Level, 1994-2009: Why Does National Politics Matter?," IDB Publications 81418, Inter-American Development Bank.


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