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Functional literacy, educational attainment and earnings - evidence from the international adult literacy survey

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Author Info

  • Kevin Denny

    (Institute for Fiscal Studies and University College Dublin)

  • Colm Harmon
  • Sandra Redmond

Abstract

In this paper a rich and innovative dataset, the International Adult Literacy Survey, is used to examine the impact of functional literacy on earnings. The IALS surveys 12 OECD countries and sub-regions via a consistent questionnaire and includes a number of tests of numeracy and literacy, as well as basic labour market information. This paper examines the effect of these skills on labour market earnings for the Republic of Ireland, Northern Ireland, and for Great Britain. The estimates suggest that while ability has a role in determining earnings the dominant factor remains formal education. It is shown that, particularly for Great Britain, there is a positive interaction between the test score and education in determining earnings.

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File URL: http://www.ifs.org.uk/wps/wp0009.pdf
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Bibliographic Info

Paper provided by Institute for Fiscal Studies in its series IFS Working Papers with number W00/09.

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Length: 21 pp
Date of creation: Apr 2000
Date of revision:
Handle: RePEc:ifs:ifsewp:00/09

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References

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  1. Gosling, Amanda & Machin, Stephen & Meghir, Costas, 2000. "The Changing Distribution of Male Wages in the U.K," Review of Economic Studies, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 67(4), pages 635-66, October.
  2. Tussing, A. Dale, 1978. "Irish Educational Expenditures - Past, Present, and Future," Research Series, Economic and Social Research Institute (ESRI), number GRS92.
  3. Charette, Michael & Meng, Ronald, 1994. "Explaining language proficiency : Objective versus self-assessed measures of literacy," Economics Letters, Elsevier, vol. 44(3), pages 313-321.
  4. John Cawley & Karen Conneely & James Heckman & Edward Vytlacil, 1996. "Cognitive Ability, Wages, and Meritocracy," NBER Working Papers 5645, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  5. Boissiere, M & Knight, J B & Sabot, R H, 1985. "Earnings, Schooling, Ability, and Cognitive Skills," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 75(5), pages 1016-30, December.
  6. Colm Harmon & Ian Walker, 1996. "The marginal and average returns to schooling," IFS Working Papers W96/11, Institute for Fiscal Studies.
  7. Mark B. Stewart, 1982. "On Least Squares Estimation When the Dependent Variable is Grouped," Working Papers 539, Princeton University, Department of Economics, Industrial Relations Section..
  8. repec:fth:prinin:411 is not listed on IDEAS
  9. Alan Krueger & Mikael Lindahl, 1998. "Education for Growth in Sweden and the World," Working Papers 790, Princeton University, Department of Economics, Industrial Relations Section..
  10. William W. Gould & Jeffrey Pitblado & Brian Poi, 2010. "Maximum Likelihood Estimation with Stata," Stata Press books, StataCorp LP, edition 4, number ml4, April.
  11. Denny, Kevin & Harmon, Colm & Redmond, Sandra, 1999. "Wages and Human Capital: Evidence from the Irish Data," Papers 99/3, College Dublin, Department of Political Economy-.
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Citations

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Cited by:
  1. Kevin J Denny & Colm P Harmon, 2000. "Education Policy Reform and the Return to Schooling from Instrumental Variables," Working Papers 200012, School Of Economics, University College Dublin.
  2. Morgenroth, Edgar & FitzGerald, John (ed.), 2006. "Ex-ante Evaluation of the Investment Priorities for the National Development Plan 2007-2013," Research Series, Economic and Social Research Institute (ESRI), number PRS59.
  3. O'Connell, Philip J. & Russell, Helen & FitzGerald, John, 2006. "Human Resources," Book Chapters, in: Morgenroth, Edgar (ed.), Ex-Ante Evaluation of the Investment Priorities for the National Development Plan 2007-2013 Economic and Social Research Institute (ESRI).
  4. Soares De Baldini Rocha, Maúna & Ponczek, Vladimir Pinheiro, 2010. "Impacto da alfabetização de adultos sobre salário e emprego," Textos para discussão 215, Escola de Economia de São Paulo, Getulio Vargas Foundation (Brazil).
  5. Eric A. Hanushek & Ludger Woessmann, 2010. "The Economics of International Differences in Educational Achievement," NBER Working Papers 15949, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  6. Fahey, Tony & Scott, Susan & FitzGerald, John, 2006. "Sports and Arts," Book Chapters, in: Morgenroth, Edgar (ed.), Ex-Ante Evaluation of the Investment Priorities for the National Development Plan 2007-2013 Economic and Social Research Institute (ESRI).
  7. Kristof De Witte & Wim Groot & Henri?tte Maassen van den Brink, 2012. "The Efficiency of Education in Generating Literacy: A Stochastic Frontier Approach," Review of Economics & Finance, Better Advances Press, Canada, vol. 2, pages 25-37, February.
  8. Tate, Robert & Finlayson, Greg & MacWilliam, Leonard & Wiley, Miriam M. & Morgenroth, Edgar & FitzGerald, John, 2006. "Health," Book Chapters, in: Morgenroth, Edgar (ed.), Ex-Ante Evaluation of the Investment Priorities for the National Development Plan 2007-2013 Economic and Social Research Institute (ESRI).
  9. Kitty Stewart, 2002. "Measuring Well-Being and Exclusion in Europes Regions," CASE Papers case53, Centre for Analysis of Social Exclusion, LSE.
  10. Baker, Terence J. & FitzGerald, John & Honohan, Patrick & FitzGerald, John & Honohan, Patrick, 1996. "Summary and Conclusions," Book Chapters, in: Baker, Terence J. (ed.), Economic Implications for Ireland of EMU, chapter 12, pages 339-352 Economic and Social Research Institute (ESRI).
    • Morgenroth, Edgar & FitzGerald, John & FitzGerald, John, 2006. "Summary and Conclusions," Book Chapters, in: Morgenroth, Edgar (ed.), Ex-Ante Evaluation of the Investment Priorities for the National Development Plan 2007-2013, chapter 24, pages 317-333 Economic and Social Research Institute (ESRI).
  11. Fahey, Tony & Russell, Helen & FitzGerald, John, 2006. "Childcare," Book Chapters, in: Morgenroth, Edgar (ed.), Ex-Ante Evaluation of the Investment Priorities for the National Development Plan 2007-2013 Economic and Social Research Institute (ESRI).
  12. Lane, Philip & McCoy, Selina & Smith, Stephen & Smyth, Emer & Van Soest, Arthur & Walsh, John R., 2003. "Budget Perspectives 2004," Research Series, Economic and Social Research Institute (ESRI), number BMI172 edited by Callan, Tim & Doris, Aedin & McCoy, Daniel.
  13. Morgenroth, Edgar & FitzGerald, John & FitzGerald, John, 2006. "Productive Sector," Book Chapters, in: Morgenroth, Edgar (ed.), Ex-Ante Evaluation of the Investment Priorities for the National Development Plan 2007-2013, chapter 20, pages 257-277 Economic and Social Research Institute (ESRI).

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