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Absolute risk aversion and the returns to education

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  • Brunello, Giorgio

Abstract

Individual absolute risk aversion is measured for a sample of 1373 male household heads, using the 1995 wave of the Survey on the Income and Wealth of Italian households. This measure, conditional on financial and real wealth and household income, is used as an instrument for attained education in a standard log earnings equation. I find that, in line with the literature, the gap between IV and OLS estimates of the returns to education is large.
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Suggested Citation

  • Brunello, Giorgio, 2002. "Absolute risk aversion and the returns to education," Economics of Education Review, Elsevier, vol. 21(6), pages 635-640, December.
  • Handle: RePEc:eee:ecoedu:v:21:y:2002:i:6:p:635-640
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    1. Robert B. Barsky & Miles S. Kimball & F. Thomas Juster & Matthew D. Shapiro, 1995. "Preference Parameters and Behavioral Heterogeneity: An Experimental Approach in the Health and Retirement Survey," NBER Working Papers 5213, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    2. Fersterer, Josef & Winter-Ebmer, Rudolf, 2003. "Smoking, discount rates, and returns to education," Economics of Education Review, Elsevier, vol. 22(6), pages 561-566, December.
    3. Robert B. Barsky & F. Thomas Juster & Miles S. Kimball & Matthew D. Shapiro, 1997. "Preference Parameters and Behavioral Heterogeneity: An Experimental Approach in the Health and Retirement Study," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, Oxford University Press, vol. 112(2), pages 537-579.
    4. Lucifora, Claudio & Comi, Simona & Brunello, Giorgio, 2000. "The Returns to Education in Italy: A New Look at the Evidence," IZA Discussion Papers 130, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).
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    Cited by:

    1. Fersterer, Josef & Winter-Ebmer, Rudolf, 2003. "Smoking, discount rates, and returns to education," Economics of Education Review, Elsevier, vol. 22(6), pages 561-566, December.
    2. Schneider Brit S. & Schneider Udo & Ulrich Volker, 2007. "Health and the Decision to Invest in Education," Journal of Economics and Statistics (Jahrbuecher fuer Nationaloekonomie und Statistik), De Gruyter, vol. 227(5-6), pages 725-746, October.
    3. Garcia-Mainar, Inmaculada & Montuenga-Gomez, Victor M., 2005. "Education returns of wage earners and self-employed workers: Portugal vs. Spain," Economics of Education Review, Elsevier, vol. 24(2), pages 161-170, April.
    4. Oswald, Yvonne & Backes-Gellner, Uschi, 2014. "Learning for a bonus: How financial incentives interact with preferences," Journal of Public Economics, Elsevier, vol. 118(C), pages 52-61.
    5. Belzil, Christian & Leonardi, Marco, 2007. "Can risk aversion explain schooling attainments? Evidence from Italy," Labour Economics, Elsevier, vol. 14(6), pages 957-970, December.
    6. Eisenhauer, Joseph G., 2010. "Rank-ordering of risk preferences with conventional and discrete measures," The Quarterly Review of Economics and Finance, Elsevier, vol. 50(3), pages 291-297, August.
    7. Paolo Ghinetti, 2014. "A New Look at the Public Wage Premium in Italy: The Role of Schooling Endogeneity," LABOUR, CEIS, vol. 28(1), pages 87-111, March.
    8. Elamin H. Elbasha, 2005. "Risk aversion and uncertainty in cost-effectiveness analysis: the expected-utility, moment-generating function approach," Health Economics, John Wiley & Sons, Ltd., vol. 14(5), pages 457-470.
    9. Giorgio Brunello & Lorenzo Rocco, 2008. "Educational Standards in Private and Public Schools," Economic Journal, Royal Economic Society, vol. 118(533), pages 1866-1887, November.
    10. Guiso, Luigi & Paiella, Monica, 2004. "The Role of Risk Aversion in Predicting Individual Behaviours," CEPR Discussion Papers 4591, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
    11. Rieger, Matthias, 2015. "Risk aversion, time preference and health production: Theory and empirical evidence from Cambodia," Economics & Human Biology, Elsevier, vol. 17(C), pages 1-15.
    12. Xiaohao Ding & Joop Hartog & Yuze Sun, 2010. "Can we measure Individual Risk Attitudes in a Survey?," Tinbergen Institute Discussion Papers 10-027/3, Tinbergen Institute.
    13. Inmaculada García Mainar & Víctor M. Montuenga Gómez, 2004. "Returns to education and to experience within the EU: are there differences between wage earners and the self-employed?," Documentos de Trabajo dt2004-08, Facultad de Ciencias Económicas y Empresariales, Universidad de Zaragoza.
    14. Diaz-Serrano, Luis, 2005. "On the negative relationship between labor income uncertainty and homeownership: Risk-aversion vs. credit constraints," Journal of Housing Economics, Elsevier, vol. 14(2), pages 109-126, June.
    15. Sephavand, Mohammad & Shahbazian, Roujman, 2017. "Individual’s Risk Attitudes in sub-Saharan Africa: Determinants and Reliability of Self-reported Risk in Burkina Faso," Working Paper Series 2017:11, Uppsala University, Department of Economics.
    16. Park, Seonyoung, 2011. "Returning to school for higher returns," Economics of Education Review, Elsevier, vol. 30(6), pages 1215-1228.
    17. Marco Leonardi, 2007. "Do Parents Risk Aversion and Wealth Explalin Secondary School Choice?," Giornale degli Economisti, GDE (Giornale degli Economisti e Annali di Economia), Bocconi University, vol. 66(2), pages 177-206, July.
    18. Cipollone, Angela, 2011. "Education as a precautionary asset," MPRA Paper 34575, University Library of Munich, Germany.
    19. J. François Outreville, 2015. "The Relationship Between Relative Risk Aversion And The Level Of Education: A Survey And Implications For The Demand For Life Insurance," Journal of Economic Surveys, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 29(1), pages 97-111, February.
    20. Sarah Brown & Karl Taylor, 2006. "Education, Risk Preference and Wages," Working Papers 2006002, The University of Sheffield, Department of Economics, revised Feb 2006.
    21. Checchi, Daniele & Fiorio, Carlo V. & Leonardi, Marco, 2014. "Parents' risk aversion and children's educational attainment," Labour Economics, Elsevier, vol. 30(C), pages 164-175.
    22. Nathan Kettlewell, 2016. "Utilisation and Selection in an Ancillaries Health Insurance Market," Discussion Papers 2016-17, School of Economics, The University of New South Wales.
    23. Jaime Ruiz-Tagle V. & Pablo Tapia G., 2012. "Brechas por Género en Aversión al Riesgo," Working Papers wp373, University of Chile, Department of Economics.

    More about this item

    JEL classification:

    • J24 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Demand and Supply of Labor - - - Human Capital; Skills; Occupational Choice; Labor Productivity
    • J31 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Wages, Compensation, and Labor Costs - - - Wage Level and Structure; Wage Differentials

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