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The fading productivity of schooling in East Asia

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

We estimate changes in the productivity of schooling for six East Asian countries. Our productivity measure is based on changes in the relative price of schooling. A rising price of schooling relative to other labor-intensive service sectors should indicate declining relative schooling productivity. We find that the price of schooling increased by more than the price of other labor-intensive services in 1980 to 1994. We also find that the cognitive achievement of pupils did not change substantially, which suggests a constant quality of schooling output. Hence, we conclude that schooling productivity has declined. The main reason for the fading productivity of schooling in East Asian countries appears to be a strong 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. 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.
  2. Gundlach, Erich & Wößmann, Ludger & Gmelin, Jens, 2000. "The decline of schooling productivity in OECD countries," Kiel Working Papers 926, Kiel Institute for the World Economy (IfW).
  3. 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.
  4. Lee, J.-W. & Barro, R.J., 1998. "Schooling Quality in a Cross Section of Countries," Papers 659, Harvard - Institute for International Development.
  5. Alwyn Young, 1995. "The Tyranny of Numbers: Confronting the Statistical Realities of the East Asian Growth Experience," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, Oxford University Press, vol. 110(3), pages 641-680.
  6. James J. Heckman, 1999. "Policies to Foster Human Capital," NBER Working Papers 7288, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  7. 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.
  8. 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.
  9. Eric A. Hanushek & Dongwook Kim, 1995. "Schooling, Labor Force Quality, and Economic Growth," NBER Working Papers 5399, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  10. Felipe, J., 1997. "Total Factor Productivity Growth in East Asia: A Critical Survey," Papers 65, Asian Development Bank.
  11. 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.
  12. Eric A. Hanushek & Steven G. Rivkin, 1997. "Understanding the Twentieth-Century Growth in U.S. School Spending," Journal of Human Resources, University of Wisconsin Press, vol. 32(1), pages 35-68.
  13. 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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