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Labour market effects of the polytechnic education reform: The Finnish experience

  • Böckerman, Petri
  • Hämäläinen, Ulla
  • Uusitalo, Roope

This paper evaluates the labour market effects of the introduction of the polytechnic education system in Finland. The polytechnic reform gradually transformed former vocational colleges into polytechnics. Since the timing of the reform differed across schools, we can compare the performance of polytechnic graduates to the performance of vocational college graduates controlling for both the year and the school effects. The results are somewhat sensitive to how the selectivity issues are treated but generally suggest that both the earnings and the employment levels of post-reform graduates are higher in the field of business and administration. The effects are much smaller and usually insignificant in other fields.

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Article provided by Elsevier in its journal Economics of Education Review.

Volume (Year): 28 (2009)
Issue (Month): 6 (December)
Pages: 672-681

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Handle: RePEc:eee:ecoedu:v:28:y:2009:i:6:p:672-681
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  1. Costas Meghir & MÃ¥rten Palme, 2004. "Educational reform, ability and family background," IFS Working Papers W04/10, Institute for Fiscal Studies.
  2. Robert A. Margo & T. Aldrich Finegan, 1996. "Compulsory Schooling Legislation and School Attendance in Turn-of-the-Century America: A "Natural Experiment" Approach," NBER Historical Working Papers 0089, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  3. Andrew M. Gill & Duane E. Leigh, 2000. "Community college enrollment, college major, and the gender wage gap," Industrial and Labor Relations Review, ILR Review, Cornell University, ILR School, vol. 54(1), pages 163-181, October.
  4. Uusitalo, Roope, 1999. "Return to education in Finland," Labour Economics, Elsevier, vol. 6(4), pages 569-580, November.
  5. Harmon, Colm & Walker, Ian, 1995. "Estimates of the Economic Return to Schooling for the United Kingdom," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 85(5), pages 1278-86, December.
  6. Meghir, Costas & Palme, Mårten, 1999. "Assessing the Effect of Schooling on Earnings Using a Social Experiment," SSE/EFI Working Paper Series in Economics and Finance 313, Stockholm School of Economics.
  7. Douglas Staiger & James H. Stock, 1997. "Instrumental Variables Regression with Weak Instruments," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 65(3), pages 557-586, May.
  8. Kane, Thomas J & Rouse, Cecilia Elena, 1995. "Labor-Market Returns to Two- and Four-Year College," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 85(3), pages 600-614, June.
  9. Maurin, Eric & McNally, Sandra, 2007. "Educational Effects of Widening Access to the Academic Track: A Natural Experiment," IZA Discussion Papers 2596, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).
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