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Educational Attainment and Labour Market Outcomes in South Africa, 1994-2010


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  • Nicola Branson
  • Murray Leibbrandt


In this paper we document the impact of education levels on labour market outcomes from 1994 to 2010 using national household survey data. We show that higher levels of education are strongly rewarded in the labour market in terms of earnings and that a tertiary qualification improves an individual’s prospects of employment. While the premium for matric and incomplete secondary has fallen marginally over the period, the premium to tertiary has risen, especially for women. Differences in the reward to education level are evident for Africans versus the overall population, between urban and rural areas and for younger versus older workers. In particular, the premium to tertiary education has increased at a higher rate for Africans than for the overall population. L'éducation et son rendement sur le marché du travail en Afrique du Sud, 1994-2010 Dans cette étude nous examinons les rendements de l’éducation sur le marché du travail entre 1994 et 2010 à l’aide d’enquêtes-ménages nationales. Nous montrons que le rendement de l’éducation supérieure en termes de salaire est très élevé et qu’un diplôme du supérieur augmente également la probabilité d’être employé. Alors qu’un niveau d’éducation secondaire a eu des rendements en légère baisse au cours de la période, le rendement de l’éducation tertiaire a augmenté, surtout pour les femmes. A niveau éducatif donné, des différences de rendement sont observées entre les Africains et la population totale, les zones rurales et urbaines et entre les jeunes et les séniors. En particulier, les rendements de l’éducation tertiaire a augmenté plus rapidement pour les Africains que pour la population totale.

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Bibliographic Info

Paper provided by OECD Publishing in its series OECD Economics Department Working Papers with number 1022.

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Date of creation: 19 Feb 2013
Date of revision:
Handle: RePEc:oec:ecoaaa:1022-en

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Keywords: education; employment; earnings; national household survey data; South Africa; Afrique du Sud; éducation; salaires; enquête ménage nationale; emploi;

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