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Système éducatif et bien-être social : faut-il subventionner l’éducation?


  • Barthélémy, Vincent



We deal with an OLG model in which human capital accumulation depends on two inputs: the personal training effort and the productivity of the public education system. The productivity of public education is represented by the teacher-pupil ratio, which partly depends on the percentage of teachers chosen by the government. Even if individuals also influence the teacher-pupil ratio through their training effort, each one taken individually disregards this effect. This last points entails a break between competitive equilibrium and optimum and thus justifies a public intervention necessary to compensate for this sub-optimality. We show that a subsidy to education together with intergenerational transfers are sufficient to restore the optimum in the competitive equilibrium. Finally, along the constant growth path, we show that the sign of the subsidy depends on the relative size of the two educational externalities. We specify the effect of main parameters on optimal variables in an example. Nous considérons un modèle à générations imbriquées dans lequel l’accumulation de capital humain dépend à la fois de l’effort d’éducation des individus et de la productivité du système public d’éducation. Ce dernier dépend notamment du pourcentage d’enseignants choisi par les pouvoirs publics. Même si chaque individu influence également le taux d’encadrement par son propre effort d’éducation qui modifie la taille des classes, chacun pris individuellement considère cet effet comme négligeable. Ceci introduit une rupture entre équilibre et optimum et rend nécessaire une intervention publique. Nous montrons qu’une subvention à l’éducation associée à des transferts intergénérationnels (deuxième théorème du bien-être) suffit à rétablir l’optimum dans l’équilibre concurrentiel. Le long du sentier de croissance à taux constant, le signe de la subvention dépend de l’ampleur relative des deux externalités d’éducation. Nous précisons l’influence des paramètres pertinents sur les variables optimales dans un exemple.

Suggested Citation

  • Barthélémy, Vincent, 2000. "Système éducatif et bien-être social : faut-il subventionner l’éducation?," L'Actualité Economique, Société Canadienne de Science Economique, vol. 76(4), pages 521-541, décembre.
  • Handle: RePEc:ris:actuec:v:76:y:2000:i:4:p:521-541

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    References listed on IDEAS

    1. Alan B. Krueger, 1999. "Experimental Estimates of Education Production Functions," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, Oxford University Press, vol. 114(2), pages 497-532.
    2. repec:fth:prinin:379 is not listed on IDEAS
    3. Yoram Ben-Porath, 1967. "The Production of Human Capital and the Life Cycle of Earnings," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 75, pages 352-352.
    4. MARCHAND, M. & MICHEL, Ph. & PESTIEAU, P., 1990. "Optimal intergenerational transfers in a growth model with fertility and productivity changes," CORE Discussion Papers 1990059, Université catholique de Louvain, Center for Operations Research and Econometrics (CORE).
    5. Glomm, Gerhard & Ravikumar, B, 1992. "Public versus Private Investment in Human Capital Endogenous Growth and Income Inequality," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 100(4), pages 818-834, August.
    6. MARCHAND, Maurice & MICHEL, Philippe & PESTIEAU, Pierre, 1993. "Optimal intergenerational transfers in an endogenous growth model with fertility change," CORE Discussion Papers 1993011, Université catholique de Louvain, Center for Operations Research and Econometrics (CORE).
    7. Mark Gradstein & Moshe Justman, 1996. "The political economy of mixed public and private schooling: A dynamic analysis," International Tax and Public Finance, Springer;International Institute of Public Finance, vol. 3(3), pages 297-310, July.
    8. Costas Azariadis & Allan Drazen, 1990. "Threshold Externalities in Economic Development," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, Oxford University Press, vol. 105(2), pages 501-526.
    9. Lucas, Robert Jr., 1988. "On the mechanics of economic development," Journal of Monetary Economics, Elsevier, vol. 22(1), pages 3-42, July.
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    Cited by:

    1. Ben Mimoun Mohamed, 2005. "Redistribution Through Education and Other Mechanisms Under Capital-Market Imperfections and Uncertainty: A Welfare Effect Analysis," LABOUR, CEIS, vol. 19(2), pages 191-236, June.

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