Foreign university graduates in the Greek labour market: Employment, salaries and overeducation
Greece is ranked among the first countries of the world in terms of student migration, while compared with other EU countries Greece has the highest number of students studying in other member states. Although the issue of migrating Greek students is constantly analysed in the newspapers, and often in relation to the educational policy adopted in Greece, 1 most of the academic literature (Kanellopoulos and Psacharopoulos, 1997) is focused either on the cost side of this phenomenon in terms of expenditure and its implications for the balance of payments or on the loss of brains (Brain Drain) when the best students remain abroad. So far, to the best of our knowledge, no research effort has been devoted to examining how well these students perform in the Greek labour market when they return home after completion of their studies. More specifically, in this paper we examine the performance of foreign university graduates with respect to three aspects: (a) the length of time between the completion of their studies and employment; (b) the extent to which these graduates are employed in professions for which they studied; and (c) the extent to which they are overqualified in the performance of the job which they hold. Our findings suggest that (i) EU graduates are better placed in the Greek labour market, from an employability point of view, compared with graduates from all other countries and also get higher salaries compared with those who have been educated elsewhere, and particularly those educated in the Balkan countries; (ii) factors leading to higher returns after graduation are previous work experience, whether the graduate had worked systematically in the past and also if their qualification is at MSc|MA level or higher. Moreover, graduates perceiving that their qualifications are higher than their job requirements are getting higher returns; (iii) graduates with parents having a university qualification do not consider themselves as overqualified. This probably indicates that the perception of being overeducated or not is based to some degree on past family achievements and consequently one's decision to undertake studies, and the level of these studies, is taken on family, social and cultural grounds; (iv) overeducation does not place graduates in a better position from the point of view of employability, however, overeducated graduates do have higher salaries. Copyright © 2004 John Wiley & Sons, Ltd.
Volume (Year): 9 (2004)
Issue (Month): 2 ()
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