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Under which conditions does religion affect educational outcomes?

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  • Boppart, Timo
  • Falkinger, Josef
  • Grossmann, Volker
  • Woitek, Ulrich
  • Wüthrich, Gabriela

Abstract

This paper examines under which conditions religious denomination affects public spending on schooling and educational performance. We employ a unique data set which covers, inter alia, information on numerous measures of public school inputs in 169 Swiss districts for the years 1871/72, 1881/82 and 1894/95, marks from pedagogical examinations of conscripts (1875–1903), and results from political referenda to capture conservative or progressive values. Although Catholic districts show on average significantly lower educational performance and spend less on primary schooling than Protestant districts, Catholicism is harmful only in a conservative milieu. We also exploit information on absenteeism of pupils from school to separate provision of schooling from use of schooling.

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  • Boppart, Timo & Falkinger, Josef & Grossmann, Volker & Woitek, Ulrich & Wüthrich, Gabriela, 2013. "Under which conditions does religion affect educational outcomes?," Explorations in Economic History, Elsevier, vol. 50(2), pages 242-266.
  • Handle: RePEc:eee:exehis:v:50:y:2013:i:2:p:242-266
    DOI: 10.1016/j.eeh.2012.12.001
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    Cited by:

    1. Osikominu, Aderonke & Grossmann, Volker & Osterfeld, Marius, 2014. "Are Sociocultural Factors Important for Studying a Science University Major?," VfS Annual Conference 2014 (Hamburg): Evidence-based Economic Policy 100404, Verein für Socialpolitik / German Economic Association.
    2. Becker, Sascha O. & Rubin, Jared & Woessmann, Ludger, 2020. "Religion in Economic History: A Survey," CEPR Discussion Papers 14894, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
    3. Matthias Blum & Matthias Strebel, 2015. "Max Weber and the First World War: Protestant and Catholic living standards in Germany, 1915-1919," Economics Working Papers 15-04, Queen's Management School, Queen's University Belfast.
    4. Becker, Sascha O. & Hornung, Erik, 2020. "The Political Economy of the Prussian Three-Class Franchise," The Journal of Economic History, Cambridge University Press, vol. 80(4), pages 1143-1188, December.
    5. Palma, Nuno & Reis, Jaime, 2021. "Can autocracy promote literacy? Evidence from a cultural alignment success story," Journal of Economic Behavior & Organization, Elsevier, vol. 186(C), pages 412-436.
    6. Davide Cantoni & Jeremiah Dittmar & Noam Yuchtman, 2017. "Reallocation and secularization: the economic consequences of the protestant reformation," CEP Discussion Papers dp1483, Centre for Economic Performance, LSE.
    7. de la Croix, David & Perrin, Faustine, 2018. "How far can economic incentives explain the French fertility and education transition?," European Economic Review, Elsevier, vol. 108(C), pages 221-245.
    8. Becker, Sascha O. & Pfaff, Steven & Rubin, Jared, 2016. "Causes and consequences of the Protestant Reformation," Explorations in Economic History, Elsevier, vol. 62(C), pages 1-25.
    9. David de la Croix & Clara Delavallade, 2018. "Religions, Fertility, And Growth In Southeast Asia," International Economic Review, Department of Economics, University of Pennsylvania and Osaka University Institute of Social and Economic Research Association, vol. 59(2), pages 907-946, May.
    10. Sheremeta, Roman & Smith, Vernon, 2017. "The Impact of the Reformation on the Economic Development of Western Europe," MPRA Paper 87220, University Library of Munich, Germany.
    11. Grytten, Ola Honningdal, 2020. "Weber revisited: A literature review on the possible Link between Protestantism, Entrepreneurship and Economic Growth," Discussion Paper Series in Economics 8/2020, Norwegian School of Economics, Department of Economics.
    12. Jared Rubin, 2014. "Printing and Protestants: An Empirical Test of the Role of Printing in the Reformation," The Review of Economics and Statistics, MIT Press, vol. 96(2), pages 270-286, May.
    13. David de la Croix & Faustine Perrin, 2016. "French Fertility and Education Transition: Rational Choice vs. Cultural Diffusion," LIDAM Discussion Papers IRES 2016007, Université catholique de Louvain, Institut de Recherches Economiques et Sociales (IRES).
    14. Davide Cantoni & Jeremiah Dittmar & Noam Yuchtman, 2016. "Reformation and Reallocation: Religious and Secular Economic Activity in Early Modern Germany," CESifo Working Paper Series 6218, CESifo.
    15. Eiji Yamamura, 2017. "Effect of Historical Educational Level on Perceived Inequality, Preference for Redistribution and Progressive Taxation," International Economic Journal, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 31(3), pages 355-369, July.
    16. Luca Nunziata & Lorenzo Rocco, 2016. "A tale of minorities: evidence on religious ethics and entrepreneurship," Journal of Economic Growth, Springer, vol. 21(2), pages 189-224, June.
    17. Aderonke Osikominu & Volker Grossmann & Marius Osterfeld, 2020. "Sociocultural background and choice of STEM majors at university," Oxford Economic Papers, Oxford University Press, vol. 72(2), pages 347-369.
    18. Lech E. Gruszecki & Alina Betlej & Bartosz Jozwik & Andrzej Pietrzak, 2021. "Influence of Religious Faith on Economic Growth and the Environment," European Research Studies Journal, European Research Studies Journal, vol. 0(3), pages 699-715.
    19. Martina Cioni & Govanni Federico & Michelangelo Vasta, 2018. "Ninety years of publications in Economic History: evidence from the top five field journals (1927-2017)," Department of Economics University of Siena 791, Department of Economics, University of Siena.
    20. DeBacker, Jason M. & Routon, P. Wesley, 2017. "Expectations, education, and opportunity," Journal of Economic Psychology, Elsevier, vol. 59(C), pages 29-44.

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    More about this item

    Keywords

    Catholicism; Human capital; Political attitudes; Public education; Religious denomination;
    All these keywords.

    JEL classification:

    • H52 - Public Economics - - National Government Expenditures and Related Policies - - - Government Expenditures and Education
    • I20 - Health, Education, and Welfare - - Education - - - General
    • O10 - Economic Development, Innovation, Technological Change, and Growth - - Economic Development - - - General

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