The value of basic skills in the British labour market
We evaluate the labour market value of literacy and numeracy in the UK, focusing on the impact of basic skills on wages. We draw on literacy and numeracy tests undertaken by all members of the UK 1970 British Cohort Study, and on earlier test score information collected during childhood. The data used are rich and allow us to account for potential ability bias. We find literacy and numeracy skills are positively associated with earnings, over and above any general effect on earnings from a person being more cognitively able and indeed over and above the effect of education on earnings. We also assess whether the wage return to skills has increased over time, using a cross cohort analysis. Literacy and numeracy skills have retained their high value in the UK labour market over the period 1995--2004, despite numerous policy attempts to increase the supply of skills during this period. Copyright 2011 Oxford University Press 2010 All rights reserved, Oxford University Press.
Volume (Year): 63 (2011)
Issue (Month): 1 (January)
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