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Measuring the Returns to Lifelong Learning

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  • Jo Blanden
  • Franz Buscha
  • Patrick Sturgis
  • Peter Urwin

Abstract

This paper investigates the returns to lifelong learning, which is interpreted as the attainment of qualifications following entry into the labour market. For a number of reasons our analysis of the British Household Panel Survey (BHPS) represents an important addition to the existing evidence base. We allow for financial and non-financial returns to lifelong learning by using as dependent variables both (i) hourly earnings and (ii) CAMSIS score. A fixed effects specification counters the potential biases that arise from unobserved individual heterogeneity and the inclusion of lags allows estimation of how the returns to lifelong learning evolve over a ten year period after the qualification is obtained. We find evidence of earnings and occupation status returns using a broad categorisation of lifelong learning for both men and women, but more variability in returns when disaggregated NVQ-equivalent categories of qualification are considered. Our findings are broadly in line with existing evidence within the UK, which is mostly based on the analysis of cohort studies. 0f particular interest is the finding that returns to women materialise much sooner after the attainment of a qualification, than is the case for their male counterparts.

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Bibliographic Info

Paper provided by Centre for the Economics of Education, LSE in its series CEE Discussion Papers with number 0110.

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Date of creation: Mar 2010
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Handle: RePEc:cep:ceedps:0110

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Web page: http://cee.lse.ac.uk/publications.htm

Related research

Keywords: Lifelong learning; earnings; social status;

This paper has been announced in the following NEP Reports:

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  1. Booth, Alison L. & Francesconi, Marco & Zoega, Gylfi, 2003. "Unions, Work-Related Training, and Wages: Evidence for British Men," IZA Discussion Papers 737, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).
  2. Theodore W. Schultz, 1960. "Capital Formation by Education," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 68, pages 571.
  3. Stevens, Margaret, 1999. "Should Firms be Required to Pay for Vocational Training?," CEPR Discussion Papers 2099, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
  4. Charley Greenwood & Andrew Jenkins & Anna Vignoles, 2007. "The Returns to Qualifications in England: Updating the Evidence Base on Level 2 and Level 3 Vocational Qualifications," CEE Discussion Papers 0089, Centre for the Economics of Education, LSE.
  5. Stenberg, Anders & Westerlund, Olle, 2004. "Does Comprehensive Education Work for the Long-term Unemployed?," UmeÃ¥ Economic Studies 641, Umeå University, Department of Economics.
  6. Bassanini, Andrea & Booth, Alison L. & Brunello, Giorgio & De Paola, Maria & Leuven, Edwin, 2005. "Workplace Training in Europe," IZA Discussion Papers 1640, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).
  7. Anna Vignoles & Augustin de Coulon, 2008. "An Analysis of the Benefit of NVQ2 Qualifications Acquired at Age 26-34," CEE Discussion Papers 0106, Centre for the Economics of Education, LSE.
  8. Psacharopoulos, George & Patrinos, Harry Anthony, 2002. "Returns to investment in education : a further update," Policy Research Working Paper Series 2881, The World Bank.
  9. Lorraine Dearden & Leslie McGranahan & Barbara Sianesi, 2004. "An In-Depth Analysis of the Returns to National Vocational Qualifications Obtained at level 2," CEE Discussion Papers 0046, Centre for the Economics of Education, LSE.
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