IDEAS home Printed from https://ideas.repec.org/a/ifs/fistud/v20y1999i1p1-23.html
   My bibliography  Save this article

Human capital investment: the returns from education and training to the individual, the firm and the economy

Author

Listed:
  • Richard Blundell

    () (Institute for Fiscal Studies and University College London)

  • Lorraine Dearden

    () (Institute for Fiscal Studies and Bedford Group, Institute of Education, University of London)

  • Costas Meghir

    () (Institute for Fiscal Studies and University College London)

  • Barbara Sianesi

    () (Institute for Fiscal Studies)

Abstract

This paper provides a non-technical review of the evidence on the returns to education and training for the individual, the firm and the economy at large. It begins by reviewing the empirical work that has attempted to estimate the true causal effect of education and training on individual earnings, focusing on the recent literature that has attempted to control for potential biases in the estimated returns to education and training. It then moves on to review the literature that has looked at the returns from human capital investments to employers. Lack of suitable data and methodological difficulties have resulted in a paucity of studies that have carried out sound empirical work on this issue. In the final part of the review, we look at the work that has tried to assess the contribution of human capital to national economic growth at the macroeconomic level. This work has generally involved using either a ‘growth accounting’ theoretical framework or ‘new growth’ theories. Although the empirical macroeconomic evidence that accompanies this work does not generally allow one to distinguish between the two approaches, there is a substantial body of evidence on the contribution of education to economic growth.

Suggested Citation

  • Richard Blundell & Lorraine Dearden & Costas Meghir & Barbara Sianesi, 1999. "Human capital investment: the returns from education and training to the individual, the firm and the economy," Fiscal Studies, Institute for Fiscal Studies, vol. 20(1), pages 1-23, March.
  • Handle: RePEc:ifs:fistud:v:20:y:1999:i:1:p:1-23
    as

    Download full text from publisher

    File URL: http://www.ifs.org.uk/fs/articles/0017a.pdf
    Download Restriction: no

    References listed on IDEAS

    as
    1. Ann P. Bartel, 1991. "Productivity Gains From the Implementation of Employee Training Programs," NBER Working Papers 3893, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    2. Benabou, Roland, 1996. "Heterogeneity, Stratification, and Growth: Macroeconomic Implications of Community Structure and School Finance," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 86(3), pages 584-609, June.
    3. Benhabib, Jess & Spiegel, Mark M., 1994. "The role of human capital in economic development evidence from aggregate cross-country data," Journal of Monetary Economics, Elsevier, vol. 34(2), pages 143-173, October.
    4. Blackburn, McKinley L & Neumark, David, 1993. "Omitted-Ability Bias and the Increase in the Return to Schooling," Journal of Labor Economics, University of Chicago Press, vol. 11(3), pages 521-544, July.
    5. Barron, John M & Black, Dan A & Loewenstein, Mark A, 1989. "Job Matching and On-the-Job Training," Journal of Labor Economics, University of Chicago Press, vol. 7(1), pages 1-19, January.
    6. Black, Sandra E & Lynch, Lisa M, 1996. "Human-Capital Investments and Productivity," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 86(2), pages 263-267, May.
    7. Costas Azariadis & Allan Drazen, 1990. "Threshold Externalities in Economic Development," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, Oxford University Press, vol. 105(2), pages 501-526.
    8. Bishop, John H, 1990. "Job Performance, Turnover, and Wage Growth," Journal of Labor Economics, University of Chicago Press, vol. 8(3), pages 363-386, July.
    9. Orley Ashenfelter & Cecilia Rouse, 1998. "Income, Schooling, and Ability: Evidence from a New Sample of Identical Twins," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, Oxford University Press, vol. 113(1), pages 253-284.
    Full references (including those not matched with items on IDEAS)

    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
    • O47 - Economic Development, Innovation, Technological Change, and Growth - - Economic Growth and Aggregate Productivity - - - Empirical Studies of Economic Growth; Aggregate Productivity; Cross-Country Output Convergence

    Statistics

    Access and download statistics

    Corrections

    All material on this site has been provided by the respective publishers and authors. You can help correct errors and omissions. When requesting a correction, please mention this item's handle: RePEc:ifs:fistud:v:20:y:1999:i:1:p:1-23. See general information about how to correct material in RePEc.

    For technical questions regarding this item, or to correct its authors, title, abstract, bibliographic or download information, contact: (Emma Hyman). General contact details of provider: http://edirc.repec.org/data/ifsssuk.html .

    If you have authored this item and are not yet registered with RePEc, we encourage you to do it here. This allows to link your profile to this item. It also allows you to accept potential citations to this item that we are uncertain about.

    If CitEc recognized a reference but did not link an item in RePEc to it, you can help with this form .

    If you know of missing items citing this one, you can help us creating those links by adding the relevant references in the same way as above, for each refering item. If you are a registered author of this item, you may also want to check the "citations" tab in your RePEc Author Service profile, as there may be some citations waiting for confirmation.

    Please note that corrections may take a couple of weeks to filter through the various RePEc services.

    IDEAS is a RePEc service hosted by the Research Division of the Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis . RePEc uses bibliographic data supplied by the respective publishers.