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Ist Bildung eine Ware? Ein Klärungsversuch / Is Education a Market Good? An Attempt to Clarify

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  • Mause Karsten

Abstract

This paper demonstrates the absurdity of the slogan ‘Education is not a Commodity!’, which is often used in discussions about educational policy issues. Based on the household production approach, which has been developed by Gary S. Becker and his colleagues, it is argued that an individual’s education is not a good which can be purchased on a market. However, on markets individuals can buy educational services that may be used by a single person to ‘produce’ his/her stock of education. In economic terms, the output of this individual production process-education-can be interpreted as a part of a person’s human capital. The latter may be utilized by the respective individual on the labor market. The proposed distinction between educational services, education, and human capital is an attempt to bring conceptual clarity into social-science analyses (i) of markets for educational services, (ii) of educational processes, and (iii) of labor markets.

Suggested Citation

  • Mause Karsten, 2008. "Ist Bildung eine Ware? Ein Klärungsversuch / Is Education a Market Good? An Attempt to Clarify," ORDO. Jahrbuch für die Ordnung von Wirtschaft und Gesellschaft, De Gruyter, vol. 59(1), pages 363-380, January.
  • Handle: RePEc:bpj:ordojb:v:59:y:2008:i:1:p:363-380:n:18
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    References listed on IDEAS

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