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Human Capital In Growth Regressions: How Much Difference Does Data Quality Make?

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  • de la Fuente, Angel
  • Doménech, Rafael

Abstract

We construct a revised version of the Barro and Lee (1996) data set for a sample of OECD countries using previously unexploited sources and following a heuristic approach to obtain plausible time profiles for attainment levels by removing sharp breaks in the data that seem to reflect changes in classification criteria. It is then shown that these revised data perform much better than the Barro and Lee (1996) or Nehru et al (1995) series in a number of growth specifications. We interpret these results as an indication that poor data quality may be behind counterintuitive findings in the recent literature on the (lack of) relationship between educational investment and growth. Using our preferred empirical specification, we also show that the contribution of TFP to cross-country productivity differentials is substantial and that its relative importance to differences in factor stocks increases over time.

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Bibliographic Info

Paper provided by C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers in its series CEPR Discussion Papers with number 2466.

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Date of creation: May 2000
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Handle: RePEc:cpr:ceprdp:2466

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Keywords: Growth; Human Capital;

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References

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  1. Malcolm D. Knight & Delano Villanueva & Norman Loayza, 1992. "Testing the Neoclassical Theory of Economic Growth," IMF Working Papers 92/106, International Monetary Fund.
  2. Hilary Steedman, 1996. "Measuring the Quality of Educational Outputs: A Note," CEP Discussion Papers dp0302, Centre for Economic Performance, LSE.
  3. Zvi Griliches & Jerry A. Hausman, 1984. "Errors in Variables in Panel Data," NBER Technical Working Papers 0037, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  4. Francesco Caselli & Gerardo Esquivel & Fernando Lefort, 1997. "Reopening the Convergence Debate: A New Look at Cross-Country Growth Empirics," Working Papers Central Bank of Chile, Central Bank of Chile 03, Central Bank of Chile.
  5. Kyriacou, George A., 1991. "Level and Growth Effects of Human Capital: A Cross-Country Study of the Convergence Hypothesis," Working Papers, C.V. Starr Center for Applied Economics, New York University 91-26, C.V. Starr Center for Applied Economics, New York University.
  6. Zvi Griliches, 1980. "R&D and the Productivity Slowdown," NBER Working Papers 0434, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  7. Behrman, Jere R. & Rosenzweig, Mark R., 1994. "Caveat emptor: Cross-country data on education and the labor force," Journal of Development Economics, Elsevier, vol. 44(1), pages 147-171, June.
  8. Hamilton, James D. & Monteagudo, Josefina, 1998. "The augmented Solow model and the productivity slowdown," Journal of Monetary Economics, Elsevier, Elsevier, vol. 42(3), pages 495-509, October.
  9. Edward C. Prescott, 1997. "Needed: a theory of total factor productivity," Staff Report, Federal Reserve Bank of Minneapolis 242, Federal Reserve Bank of Minneapolis.
  10. Jonathan R. W. Temple, 1998. "Robustness tests of the augmented Solow model," Journal of Applied Econometrics, John Wiley & Sons, Ltd., John Wiley & Sons, Ltd., vol. 13(4), pages 361-375.
  11. Islam, Nazrul, 1995. "Growth Empirics: A Panel Data Approach," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, MIT Press, MIT Press, vol. 110(4), pages 1127-70, November.
  12. Barro, Robert J. & Lee, Jong-Wha, 1994. "Sources of economic growth," Carnegie-Rochester Conference Series on Public Policy, Elsevier, Elsevier, vol. 40(1), pages 1-46, June.
  13. Pritchett, Lant, 1996. "Where has all the education gone?," Policy Research Working Paper Series 1581, The World Bank.
  14. Benhabib, Jess & Spiegel, Mark M., 1994. "The role of human capital in economic development evidence from aggregate cross-country data," Journal of Monetary Economics, Elsevier, Elsevier, vol. 34(2), pages 143-173, October.
  15. Barro, Robert J. & Lee, Jong-Wha, 1993. "International comparisons of educational attainment," Journal of Monetary Economics, Elsevier, Elsevier, vol. 32(3), pages 363-394, December.
  16. Charles I. Jones, . "Convergence Revisited," Working Papers, Stanford University, Department of Economics 96006, Stanford University, Department of Economics.
  17. Barro, Robert J & Lee, Jong Wha, 1996. "International Measures of Schooling Years and Schooling Quality," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 86(2), pages 218-23, May.
  18. Mankiw, N Gregory & Romer, David & Weil, David N, 1992. "A Contribution to the Empirics of Economic Growth," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, MIT Press, MIT Press, vol. 107(2), pages 407-37, May.
  19. Nehru, Vikram & Swanson, Eric & Dubey, Ashutosh, 1995. "A new database on human capital stock in developing and industrial countries: Sources, methodology, and results," Journal of Development Economics, Elsevier, vol. 46(2), pages 379-401, April.
  20. Peter Klenow & Andrés Rodríguez-Clare, 1997. "The Neoclassical Revival in Growth Economics: Has It Gone Too Far?," NBER Chapters, in: NBER Macroeconomics Annual 1997, Volume 12, pages 73-114 National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  21. Malcolm Knight & Norman Loayza & Delano Villanueva, 1993. "Testing the Neoclassical Theory of Economic Growth: A Panel Data Approach," IMF Staff Papers, Palgrave Macmillan, vol. 40(3), pages 512-541, September.
  22. Lau, Lawrence J. & Jamison, Dean T. & Louat, Frederic F., 1991. "Education and productivity in developing countries : an aggregate production function approach," Policy Research Working Paper Series 612, The World Bank.
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