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The career prospects of overeducated Americans

Author

Listed:
  • Brian Clark

    (Federal Trade Commission)

  • Clément Joubert

    (World Bank)

  • Arnaud Maurel

    (Duke University
    IZA
    NBER)

Abstract

In this paper we analyze career dynamics for US workers who have more schooling than their peers in the same occupation. We use data from the NLSY79 combined with the CPS to analyze transitions into and out of overeducated employment, together with the corresponding effects on wages. Overeducation is a fairly persistent phenomenon at the aggregate and individual levels, with 66% of workers remaining overeducated after 1 year. Overeducation is not just more common but also more persistent among blacks and low-AFQT individuals. Further, the hazard rate out of overeducation drops by about 60% during the first 5 years spent overeducated. However, the estimation of a mixed proportional hazard model suggests that this is attributable to selection on unobservables rather than true duration dependence. Lastly, overeducation is associated with lower current as well as future wages, consistent with scarring effects.

Suggested Citation

  • Brian Clark & Clément Joubert & Arnaud Maurel, 2017. "The career prospects of overeducated Americans," IZA Journal of Labor Economics, Springer;Forschungsinstitut zur Zukunft der Arbeit GmbH (IZA), vol. 6(1), pages 1-29, December.
  • Handle: RePEc:spr:izalbr:v:6:y:2017:i:1:d:10.1186_s40172-017-0053-4
    DOI: 10.1186/s40172-017-0053-4
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    Cited by:

    1. Luigi Brighi & Marcello D'Amato, 2020. "Investment in early education and job market signaling," Department of Economics (DEMB) 0179, University of Modena and Reggio Emilia, Department of Economics "Marco Biagi".
    2. Peter Cappelli, 2014. "Skill Gaps, Skill Shortages and Skill Mismatches: Evidence for the US," NBER Working Papers 20382, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    3. Jan Baran, 2019. "Is expansion of overeducation cohort-driven? Evidence from Poland," Working Papers 2019-13, Faculty of Economic Sciences, University of Warsaw.
    4. Sang Yoon (Tim) Lee & Yongseok Shin & Donghoon Lee, 2015. "The Option Value of Human Capital: Higher Education and Wage Inequality," NBER Working Papers 21724, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    5. Ana Isabel Moro-Egido, 2020. "Gender Differences in Skill Mismatches," Hacienda Pública Española / Review of Public Economics, IEF, vol. 235(4), pages 29-60, December.
    6. Erdsiek, Daniel, 2017. "Dynamics of overqualification: Evidence from the early career of graduates," ZEW Discussion Papers 17-020, ZEW - Leibniz Centre for European Economic Research.
    7. Chen, Sonja, 2016. "Adverse selection in the labour market and the demand for vocational education," CLEF Working Paper Series 3, Canadian Labour Economics Forum (CLEF), University of Waterloo.
    8. Redmond, Paul & Whelan, Adele, 2017. "Educational Attainment and Skill Utilization in the Irish Labour Market: An EU Comparison," Quarterly Economic Commentary: Special Articles, Economic and Social Research Institute (ESRI).
    9. Joaquin Turmo-Garuz & M.-Teresa Bartual-Figueras & Francisco-Javier Sierra-Martinez, 2019. "Factors Associated with Overeducation Among Recent Graduates During Labour Market Integration: The Case of Catalonia (Spain)," Social Indicators Research: An International and Interdisciplinary Journal for Quality-of-Life Measurement, Springer, vol. 144(3), pages 1273-1301, August.
    10. Ahmed Lahsen, Amina & Piper, Alan T. & Thiele, Ida-Anna, 2020. "Kim Jiyoung, Born 1982, and the Labour Market: Overeducation, Gender, Income and Life Satisfaction. Panel evidence from Korea," MPRA Paper 100616, University Library of Munich, Germany.
    11. Jan Aleksander Baran, 2020. "Are Poles stuck in overeducation? Individual dynamics of educational mismatch in Poland," Working Papers 2020-23, Faculty of Economic Sciences, University of Warsaw.
    12. McQuinn, Kieran & O'Toole, Conor & Economides, Philip & Monteiro, Teresa, 2017. "Quarterly Economic Commentary, Winter 2017," Forecasting Report, Economic and Social Research Institute (ESRI), number QEC20174, december.
    13. Ammar Farooq, 2016. "The U-shape of Over-education? Human Capital Dynamics & Occupational Mobility over the Lifecycle," 2016 Papers pfa484, Job Market Papers.
    14. Garibaldi, Pietro & Gomes, Pedro Maia & Sopraseuth, Thepthida, 2019. "Public Employment Redux," IZA Discussion Papers 12871, Institute of Labor Economics (IZA).
    15. Meroni, Elena Claudia & Vera-Toscano, Esperanza, 2017. "The persistence of overeducation among recent graduates," Labour Economics, Elsevier, vol. 48(C), pages 120-143.
    16. Araújo, Isabel & Carneiro, Anabela, 2020. "Educational Mismatches of Newly Hired Workers: Short and Medium-run Effects on Wages," GLO Discussion Paper Series 668, Global Labor Organization (GLO).
    17. Esperanza Vera-Toscano & Elena C. Meroni, 2021. "An Age–Period–Cohort Approach to the Incidence and Evolution of Overeducation and Skills Mismatch," Social Indicators Research: An International and Interdisciplinary Journal for Quality-of-Life Measurement, Springer, vol. 153(2), pages 711-740, January.
    18. Seamus McGuinness & Konstantinos Pouliakas & Paul Redmond, 2018. "Skills Mismatch: Concepts, Measurement And Policy Approaches," Journal of Economic Surveys, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 32(4), pages 985-1015, September.
    19. Andrew Agopsowicz & Chris Robinson & Ralph Stinebrickner & Todd Stinebrickner, 2017. "Careers and Mismatch for College Graduates: College and Non-college Jobs," University of Western Ontario, Centre for Human Capital and Productivity (CHCP) Working Papers 20174, University of Western Ontario, Centre for Human Capital and Productivity (CHCP).
    20. Pugno, Maurizio, 2016. "Beyond the distinction between necessaries and luxuries," MPRA Paper 73729, University Library of Munich, Germany.
    21. Junankar, Pramod N. (Raja), 2014. "The Impact of the Global Financial Crisis on Youth Labour Markets," IZA Discussion Papers 8400, Institute of Labor Economics (IZA).

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    More about this item

    Keywords

    Human capital; Earnings dynamics; Overeducation;
    All these keywords.

    JEL classification:

    • J24 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Demand and Supply of Labor - - - Human Capital; Skills; Occupational Choice; Labor Productivity
    • I21 - Health, Education, and Welfare - - Education - - - Analysis of Education

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