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The design of the university system

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  • De Fraja, Gianni
  • Valbonesi, Paola

Abstract

This paper compares the organisation of the university sector under unregulated private provision with the structure which would be chosen by a welfare maximising government. It studies a general equilibrium model where students attend university to earn higher incomes in the labour market, and universities teach them and carry out research. Each university chooses its tuition fee to maximise the amount of resources it can devote to research. Research bestows an externality on society. Government intervention needs to balance labour market efficiency considerations – which would tend to equalise the number of students attending each university – with considerations of efficiency on the production side, which suggest that the most productive universities should teach more students and carry out more research. We find that government concentrates research more that the private market would, but less than it would like to do if it had perfect information about the productivity of universities. It also allows fewer universities than would operate in a private system.

Suggested Citation

  • De Fraja, Gianni & Valbonesi, Paola, 2012. "The design of the university system," Journal of Public Economics, Elsevier, vol. 96(3), pages 317-330.
  • Handle: RePEc:eee:pubeco:v:96:y:2012:i:3:p:317-330
    DOI: 10.1016/j.jpubeco.2011.10.005
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    1. Facciamo i conti
      by Alberto Bagnai in Goofynomics on 2014-02-25 06:03:00

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    Cited by:

    1. Philippe De Donder & Francisco Martinez-Mora, 2015. "On the Political Economy of University Admission Standards," Discussion Papers in Economics 15/11, Department of Economics, University of Leicester.
    2. Manna, Ester, 2013. "Mixed Duopoly with Motivated Teachers," MPRA Paper 52041, University Library of Munich, Germany.
    3. Lisa Grazzini & Annalisa Luporini & Alessandro Petretto, 2010. "Competition between State Universities," Working Papers - Economics wp2010_02.rdf, Universita' degli Studi di Firenze, Dipartimento di Scienze per l'Economia e l'Impresa.
    4. T Agasisti & G Johnes, 2009. "Cost Structure, Efficiency and Heterogeneity in US Higher Education: An Empirical Analysis," Working Papers 599308, Lancaster University Management School, Economics Department.
    5. De Fraja, Gianni & Valbonesi, Paola, 2012. "The design of the university system," Journal of Public Economics, Elsevier, vol. 96(3), pages 317-330.
    6. Cremer, Helmuth & Maldonado, Dario, 2013. "Mixed oligopoly in education," IDEI Working Papers 766, Institut d'Économie Industrielle (IDEI), Toulouse.
    7. Dennis Epple & Richard Romano & Sinan Sarpça & Holger Sieg, 2013. "The U.S. Market for Higher Education: A General Equilibrium Analysis of State and Private Colleges and Public Funding Policies," NBER Working Papers 19298, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    8. Hidalgo-Hidalgo Marisa & Valera Guadalupe, 2016. "University Merging Process: A Guideline Proposal for Excellence-Enhancing," The B.E. Journal of Economic Analysis & Policy, De Gruyter, vol. 16(3), pages 1359-1386, September.
    9. Gianni De Fraja & Giovanni Facchini & John Gathergood, 2016. "How Much Is That Star in the Window? Professorial Salaries and Research Performance in UK Universities," Discussion Papers 2016-13, University of Nottingham, GEP.
    10. Gianni De Fraja, 2011. "A Theoretical Analysis of Public Funding for Research," CEIS Research Paper 199, Tor Vergata University, CEIS, revised 30 Jun 2011.
    11. repec:eee:pubeco:v:154:y:2017:i:c:p:1-9 is not listed on IDEAS
    12. De Donder, Philippe & Martinez-Mora, Francisco, 2017. "The political economy of higher education admission standards and participation gap," Journal of Public Economics, Elsevier, vol. 154(C), pages 1-9.

    More about this item

    Keywords

    Higher education; The organisation of the university sector;

    JEL classification:

    • I21 - Health, Education, and Welfare - - Education - - - Analysis of Education
    • I28 - Health, Education, and Welfare - - Education - - - Government Policy
    • H42 - Public Economics - - Publicly Provided Goods - - - Publicly Provided Private Goods

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