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Measuring the Consumption Value of Higher Education

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  • Annette Alstadsæter

Abstract

This article argues that the consumption value of education is an important motivation for educational choice. When controlling for ability, we find that individuals are willing to forego substantial future wage returns to acquire a particular type of higher education. We find that high-ability individuals who attended teachers' college in Norway during the 1960s could have substantially increased their lifetime income by choosing an alternative educational type. Moreover, the ex post price for the consumption value of teachers' college turned out to be even higher than the estimated ex ante willingness to pay for this consumption value. (JEL codes: J24, J31, J33, I21, H89) Copyright The Author 2010. Published by Oxford University Press on behalf of Ifo Institute for Economic Research, Munich. All rights reserved. For permissions, please email: journals.permissions@oup.com, Oxford University Press.

Suggested Citation

  • Annette Alstadsæter, 2011. "Measuring the Consumption Value of Higher Education," CESifo Economic Studies, CESifo, vol. 57(3), pages 458-479, September.
  • Handle: RePEc:oup:cesifo:v:57:y:2011:i:3:p:458-479
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    File URL: http://hdl.handle.net/10.1093/cesifo/ifq009
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    References listed on IDEAS

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    Citations

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    Cited by:

    1. Tomasz Gajderowicz & Gabriela Grotkowska & Jerzy Mycielski & Leszek Wincenciak, 2014. "Social and economic determinants of higher education choices in Poland," Ekonomia journal, Faculty of Economic Sciences, University of Warsaw, vol. 38.
    2. Björn Kauder & Niklas Potrafke, 2013. "Government Ideology and Tuition Fee Policy: Evidence from the German States," CESifo Economic Studies, CESifo, vol. 59(4), pages 628-649, December.
    3. Mira Fischer & Patrick Kampkoetter, 2014. "Effects of the German Universities' Excellence Initiative on Ability Sorting of Students and Perceptions of Educational Quality," Cologne Graduate School Working Paper Series 05-01, Cologne Graduate School in Management, Economics and Social Sciences, revised 25 Jun 2016.
    4. Brian Jacob & Brian McCall & Kevin M. Stange, 2013. "College as Country Club: Do Colleges Cater to Students' Preferences for Consumption?," NBER Working Papers 18745, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    5. Akyol, Pelin & Krishna, Kala, 2017. "Preferences, selection, and value added: A structural approach," European Economic Review, Elsevier, vol. 91(C), pages 89-117.
    6. John V. Winters & Weineng Xu, 2014. "Geographic Differences in the Earnings of Economics Majors," The Journal of Economic Education, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 45(3), pages 262-276, September.
    7. Annette Alstadsæter & Hans Henrik Sievertsen, 2009. "The Consumption Value of Higher Education," CESifo Working Paper Series 2871, CESifo Group Munich.
    8. Kraft, Holger & Munk, Claus & Seifried, Frank Thomas & Steffensen, Mogens, 2014. "Consumption and wage humps in a life-cycle model with education," SAFE Working Paper Series 53, Research Center SAFE - Sustainable Architecture for Finance in Europe, Goethe University Frankfurt.
    9. Grimaud, Andre & Tournemaine, Frederic, 2007. "Why can an environmental policy tax promote growth through the channel of education?," Ecological Economics, Elsevier, vol. 62(1), pages 27-36, April.
    10. Long, Mark C. & Goldhaber, Dan & Huntington-Klein, Nick, 2015. "Do completed college majors respond to changes in wages?," Economics of Education Review, Elsevier, vol. 49(C), pages 1-14.
    11. Fricke, Hans, 2014. "Tuition Fees and Student Achievement - Evidence from a Differential Raise in Fees," Annual Conference 2014 (Hamburg): Evidence-based Economic Policy 100521, Verein für Socialpolitik / German Economic Association.
    12. Dur, Robert & Glazer, Amihai, 2008. "Subsidizing Enjoyable Education," Labour Economics, Elsevier, vol. 15(5), pages 1023-1039, October.
    13. Philip Oreopoulos & Kjell G. Salvanes, 2009. "How large are returns to schooling? Hint: Money isn't everything," NBER Working Papers 15339, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    14. Anderberg, Dan, 2013. "Post-compulsory education: Participation and politics," European Journal of Political Economy, Elsevier, vol. 29(C), pages 134-150.

    More about this item

    JEL classification:

    • H89 - Public Economics - - Miscellaneous Issues - - - Other
    • I21 - Health, Education, and Welfare - - Education - - - Analysis of Education
    • 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
    • J33 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Wages, Compensation, and Labor Costs - - - Compensation Packages; Payment Methods

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