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Fairness in education: The Italian university before and after the reform

  • Brunori, Paolo
  • Peragine, Vito
  • Serlenga, Laura

In 2001 the Italian tertiary education system embarked in a broad process of reform. The main novelty brought by the reform was a reduction of the length of study to get a first level degree together with the introduction of a two-years, second level, master degree. This paper aims at studying the effects of the reform in terms of fairness. To this end, we first define fairness criteria following a well developed theory of equality of opportunity, we then discuss existing inequality measures consistent with these criteria, we show their relationship, and adapt them to the educational framework. We finally employ this set of measures to show the evolution of fairness in the access to university in Italy before and after the reform. Although not all fairness measures we estimated show a higher degree of fairness after the reform, the large majority does, suggesting a positive effect of the reform under a vast range of possible definitions of fairness.

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

Volume (Year): 31 (2012)
Issue (Month): 5 ()
Pages: 764-777

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Handle: RePEc:eee:ecoedu:v:31:y:2012:i:5:p:764-777
Contact details of provider: Web page: http://www.elsevier.com/locate/econedurev

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