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Optimal Education Policies and Comparative Advantage

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  • Spiros Bougheas
  • Richard Kneller
  • Raymond Riezman

Abstract

We consider the optimal education policies of a small economy whose government has a limited budget. Initially, the economy is closed and the government chooses its education policy to maximize welfare under autarky. Then the economy trades with the rest of the world. Lastly, the government chooses a new education policy that maximizes welfare under trade. Is it ever optimal for the government to choose its new policy so that it reverses the economy’s comparative advantage? We find that if the budget stays fixed when it is optimal to ‘move up the skills chain’ it is not feasible. In such a case a foreign loan is welfare improving. A move in the opposite direction can be optimal and when it is optimal it is also feasible.

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Bibliographic Info

Paper provided by CESifo Group Munich in its series CESifo Working Paper Series with number 2631.

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Date of creation: 2009
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Handle: RePEc:ces:ceswps:_2631

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Keywords: patterns of trade; education policy; welfare;

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References

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  1. Bougheas, Spiros & Riezman, Raymond, 2007. "Trade and the distribution of human capital," Journal of International Economics, Elsevier, vol. 73(2), pages 421-433, November.
  2. Barro, Robert J & Lee, Jong-Wha, 2001. "International Data on Educational Attainment: Updates and Implications," Oxford Economic Papers, Oxford University Press, vol. 53(3), pages 541-63, July.
  3. Ventura, Jaume, 1997. "Growth and Interdependence," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, MIT Press, vol. 112(1), pages 57-84, February.
  4. Grossman, Gene & Maggi, Giovanni, 1998. "Diversity and Trade," CEPR Discussion Papers 2005, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
  5. Ngo Van Long & Raymond Riezman & Antoine Soubeyran, 2007. "Trade, Wage Gaps, and Specific Human Capital Accumulation," Review of International Economics, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 15(1), pages 75-92, 02.
  6. Eckhard Janeba, 2000. "Trade, Income Inequality, and Government Policies: Redistribution of Income or Education Subsidies?," NBER Working Papers 7485, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  7. Redding, S., 1997. "Dynamic Comparative Advantage and the Welfare Effects of Trade," Economics Papers 140, Economics Group, Nuffield College, University of Oxford.
  8. Hartmut Egger & Peter Egger & Josef Falkinger & Volker Grossmann, 2005. "International Capital Market Integration, Educational Choice and Economic Growth," CESifo Working Paper Series 1630, CESifo Group Munich.
  9. Carl Davidson & Steven J. Matusz, 2006. "Trade Liberalization And Compensation," International Economic Review, Department of Economics, University of Pennsylvania and Osaka University Institute of Social and Economic Research Association, vol. 47(3), pages 723-747, 08.
  10. Ranjan, Priya, 2001. "Dynamic evolution of income distribution and credit-constrained human capital investment in open economies," Journal of International Economics, Elsevier, vol. 55(2), pages 329-358, December.
  11. Cartiglia, Filippo, 1997. "Credit constraints and human capital accumulation in the open economy," Journal of International Economics, Elsevier, vol. 43(1-2), pages 221-236, August.
  12. Gene M. Grossman, 2004. "The Distribution of Talent and the Pattern and Consequences of International Trade," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 112(1), pages 209-239, February.
  13. Jota Ishikawa, 1996. "Scale Economies in Factor Supplies: International Trade, and Migration," Canadian Journal of Economics, Canadian Economics Association, vol. 29(3), pages 573-94, August.
  14. Findlay, Ronald & Kierzkowski, Henryk, 1983. "International Trade and Human Capital: A Simple General Equilibrium Model," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 91(6), pages 957-78, December.
  15. Eckhard Janeba, 2003. "Does Trade Increase Inequality when Skills are Endogenous?," Review of International Economics, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 11(5), pages 885-898, November.
  16. Hartog,Joop & Maassen van den Brink,Henriëtte (ed.), 2007. "Human Capital," Cambridge Books, Cambridge University Press, number 9780521873161, April.
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Cited by:
  1. Carl Davidson & Nicholas Sly, 2013. "A Simple Model of Globalization, Schooling and Skill Acquisition," CESifo Working Paper Series 4394, CESifo Group Munich.
  2. Michael Funke & Marc Gronwald, 2009. "A Convex Hull Approach to Counterfactual Analysis of Trade Openness and Growth," CESifo Working Paper Series 2692, CESifo Group Munich.
  3. Pao-Li Chang & Fali Huang, 2012. "Trade and Divergence in Education Systems," Working Papers 32-2012, Singapore Management University, School of Economics.

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