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The Impact of College Education on Geographic Mobility: Identifying Education Using Multiple Components of Vietnam Draft Risk

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  • Ofer Malamud
  • Abigail K. Wozniak

Abstract

We examine whether higher education is a causal determinant of geographic mobility using variation in college attainment induced by draft-avoidance behavior during the Vietnam War. We use national and state-level induction risk to identify both educational attainment and veteran status among cohorts of affected men observed in the 1980 Census. Our 2SLS estimates imply that the additional years of higher education significantly increased the likelihood that affected men resided outside their birth states later in life. Most estimates suggest a causal impact of higher education on migration that is larger in magnitude but not significantly different from OLS. Our large reduced-form estimates for the effect of induction risk on out-of-state migration also imply that the Vietnam War led to substantial geographic churning in the national labor market. We conclude that the causal impact of college completion on subsequent mobility is large and provide evidence on a range of mechanisms that may be responsible for the relationship between college education and mobility.

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Bibliographic Info

Paper provided by National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc in its series NBER Working Papers with number 16463.

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Date of creation: Oct 2010
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Handle: RePEc:nbr:nberwo:16463

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  5. Abigail Wozniak, 2010. "Are College Graduates More Responsive to Distant Labor Market Opportunities?," Journal of Human Resources, University of Wisconsin Press, vol. 45(4), pages 944-970.
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  9. de Walque, Damien, 2007. "Does education affect smoking behaviors?: Evidence using the Vietnam draft as an instrument for college education," Journal of Health Economics, Elsevier, vol. 26(5), pages 877-895, September.
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  15. Black, Dan & Sanders, Seth & Taylor, Lowell, 2003. "Measurement of Higher Education in the Census and Current Population Survey," Journal of the American Statistical Association, American Statistical Association, vol. 98, pages 545-554, January.
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Cited by:
  1. Riddell, W. Craig & Song, Xueda, 2011. "The Impact of Education on Unemployment Incidence and Re-employment Success: Evidence from the U.S. Labour Market," CLSSRN working papers clsrn_admin-2011-18, Vancouver School of Economics, revised 27 Jul 2011.
  2. Daniel K. Fetter, 2011. "How Do Mortgage Subsidies Affect Home Ownership? Evidence from the Mid-century GI Bills," NBER Working Papers 17166, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  3. Damon Clark & Heather Royer, 2013. "The Effect of Education on Adult Mortality and Health: Evidence from Britain," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 103(6), pages 2087-2120, October.
  4. Petri Böckerman & Mika Haapanen, 2013. "The effect of polytechnic reform on migration," Journal of Population Economics, Springer, vol. 26(2), pages 593-617, April.
  5. Petri Böckerman & Mika Haapanen, 2011. "The effect of education on migration: evidence from school reform," ERSA conference papers ersa10p994, European Regional Science Association.
  6. John Kennan, 2009. "Higher Education Subsidies and Human Capital Mobility," 2009 Meeting Papers 495, Society for Economic Dynamics.

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