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An Analysis of the Determinants of Over-Education Among Italian Ph.D Graduates

Author

Listed:
  • Barbara Ermini

    (Università Politecnica delle Marche)

  • Luca Papi

    (Università Politecnica delle Marche)

  • Francesca Scaturro

    (Università Politecnica delle Marche)

Abstract

The paper examines the determinants of over-education among Italian Ph.D graduates drawn from the four cohorts 2004, 2006, 2008, 2010 surveyed by the Italian National Institute of Statistics (ISTAT). We study over-education through the definitions of over-skilling, over-qualification and a combination of the two phenomena (genuine over-education). The analysis spans the years 2004–2014 allowing us to investigate job education mismatch before and during the severe economic crisis. The results show that socio-demographic variables do not exert a relevant influence on Ph.D graduates’ over-education contradicting what the empirical literature has found for college graduates. More than socio-demographic variables, those variables related to the doctoral educational path turn out to be positively strategic for the outcome in the labor market. In particular, an experience abroad is always a positive driver to overcome any kind of job mismatch. Similarly, job related characteristics are also relevant determinants of over-education with jobs within the academia or the research sector more often associated with successful labor matching. Conversely, accessing jobs via informal channels or working as self-employed increases the risk of over-education. The investigation of the effect of the recent economic crisis emphasizes how the recession makes the labor market more selective with Ph.D and job-related variables, worsening the risk of incurring in job-education mismatch. Finally, we discuss some policy implications in the light of the empirical findings of our analysis.

Suggested Citation

  • Barbara Ermini & Luca Papi & Francesca Scaturro, 2017. "An Analysis of the Determinants of Over-Education Among Italian Ph.D Graduates," Italian Economic Journal: A Continuation of Rivista Italiana degli Economisti and Giornale degli Economisti, Springer;Società Italiana degli Economisti (Italian Economic Association), vol. 3(2), pages 167-207, July.
  • Handle: RePEc:spr:italej:v:3:y:2017:i:2:d:10.1007_s40797-017-0053-3
    DOI: 10.1007/s40797-017-0053-3
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    3. Gaeta, Giuseppe Lucio & Lubrano Lavadera, Giuseppe & Pastore, Francesco, 2018. "Overeducation wage penalty among Ph.D. holders. An unconditional quantile regression analysis on Italian data," GLO Discussion Paper Series 180, Global Labor Organization (GLO).
    4. Sanchez-Carrera Edgar J. & Travaglini Giuseppe & Ille Sebastian, 2021. "Macrodynamic Modeling of Innovation Equilibria and Traps," The B.E. Journal of Macroeconomics, De Gruyter, vol. 21(2), pages 659-694, June.
    5. Rycx, Francois & Santosuosso, Giulia & Vermeylen, Guillaume, 2022. "The Over-Education Wage Penalty among PhD Holders: A European Perspective," IZA Discussion Papers 15417, Institute of Labor Economics (IZA).
    6. Alfano Vincenzo & Cicatiello Lorenzo & Gaeta Giuseppe Lucio & Pinto Mauro, 2021. "The Gender Wage Gap among Ph.D. Holders: Evidence from Italy," The B.E. Journal of Economic Analysis & Policy, De Gruyter, vol. 21(3), pages 1107-1148, July.
    7. Alfano, Vincenzo & Gaeta, Giuseppe Lucio & Pinto, Mauro & Rotondo, Francesca & Vecchione, Gaetano, 2021. "La dinamica dell’offerta di formazione dottorale dopo la riforma Gelmini [Ph.D. courses in Italy after the Gelmini Reform]," MPRA Paper 108144, University Library of Munich, Germany.

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    More about this item

    Keywords

    Over-education; Over-skilling; Over-qualification; Ph.D graduates; Crisis;
    All these keywords.

    JEL classification:

    • C2 - Mathematical and Quantitative Methods - - Single Equation Models; Single Variables
    • I2 - Health, Education, and Welfare - - Education
    • I23 - Health, Education, and Welfare - - Education - - - Higher Education; Research Institutions
    • J24 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Demand and Supply of Labor - - - Human Capital; Skills; Occupational Choice; Labor Productivity

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