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The fading productivity of schooling in East Asia

  • Gundlach, Erich
  • Wo[beta]mann, Ludger

We compare changes in schooling output and in schooling input of six East Asian countries to derive a measure of productivity change. Our results question the impression that all is well with education in East Asia. First, we find that the cognitive achievement of pupils did not change substantially in 1980–94 (except for the Philippines, where it most likely declined). Hence schooling output largely remained flat or worsened. Second, we find that the relative price of schooling increased by more than would be warranted by zero productivity growth in schooling. Therefore, we conclude that schooling productivity has declined. The main reason for the fading productivity of schooling appears to be a decline in the pupil-teacher ratio.

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Article provided by Elsevier in its journal Journal of Asian Economics.

Volume (Year): 12 (2001)
Issue (Month): 3 ()
Pages: 401-417

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Handle: RePEc:eee:asieco:v:12:y:2001:i:3:p:401-417
Contact details of provider: Web page: http://www.elsevier.com/locate/asieco

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  1. Heckman, James J., 2000. "Policies to foster human capital," Research in Economics, Elsevier, vol. 54(1), pages 3-56, March.
  2. Pritchett, Lant & Filmer, Deon, 1999. "What education production functions really show: a positive theory of education expenditures," Economics of Education Review, Elsevier, vol. 18(2), pages 223-239, April.
  3. Jong-Wha Lee & Robert J. Barro, 1997. "Schooling Quality in a Cross Section of Countries," NBER Working Papers 6198, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  4. Behrman, Jere R., 1999. "Schooling in Asia: Selected microevidence on determinants, effects, and policy implications," Journal of Asian Economics, Elsevier, vol. 10(2), pages 147-194.
  5. Erich Gundlach & Ludger Wößmann & Jens Gmelin, 1999. "The Decline of Schooling Productivity in OECD Countries," Kiel Working Papers 926, Kiel Institute for the World Economy.
  6. Jerik Hanushek & Dennis Kimko, 2006. "Schooling, Labor-force Quality, and the Growth of Nations," Educational Studies, Higher School of Economics, issue 1, pages 154-193.
  7. Mingat, Alain, 1998. "The strategy used by high-performing Asian economies in education: Some lessons for developing countries," World Development, Elsevier, vol. 26(4), pages 695-715, April.
  8. Rao, M. Govinda, 1998. "Accommodating public expenditure policies: the case of fast growing Asian economies," World Development, Elsevier, vol. 26(4), pages 673-694, April.
  9. Quibria, M. G., 1999. "Challenges to human resource development in Asia," Journal of Asian Economics, Elsevier, vol. 10(3), pages 431-444.
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