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Labour force participation and the influence of educational attainment


  • Steven Kennedy

    (Treasury, Government of Australia)

  • Nicholas Stoney

    (Treasury, Government of Australia)

  • Leo Vance

    (Treasury, Government of Australia)


This paper uses census data from 1981 to 2006 to examine changes in labour force participation rates for people with different levels of educational attainment. We find that the participation rates of both men and women with low educational attainment rose substantially between 2001 and 2006. However, the participation rates of people with no post-school qualifications remain significantly below those with post-school qualifications (around 10 percentage points for both men and women). Within the no post-school qualifications group, the outcomes for those who completed school to year 9 or less are especially poor, with participation rates up to 20 percentage points lower than for other more highly educated groups.

Suggested Citation

  • Steven Kennedy & Nicholas Stoney & Leo Vance, 2009. "Labour force participation and the influence of educational attainment," Economic Roundup, The Treasury, Australian Government, issue 3, pages 19-36, September.
  • Handle: RePEc:tsy:journl:journl_tsy_er_2009_3_2

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    education; labour supply; skills;

    JEL classification:

    • I21 - Health, Education, and Welfare - - Education - - - Analysis of Education
    • J10 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Demographic Economics - - - General


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