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Human capital and productivity

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  • Angel de la Fuente

Abstract

This paper surveys the empirical literature on human capital and productivity and summarizes the results of my own work on the subject. On balance, the available evidence suggests that investment in education has a positive, significant and sizable effect on productivity growth. According to my estimates, moreover, the social returns to investment in human capital are higher than those on physical capital in most EU countries and in many regions of Spain.

Suggested Citation

  • Angel de la Fuente, 2011. "Human capital and productivity," UFAE and IAE Working Papers 860.11, Unitat de Fonaments de l'Anàlisi Econòmica (UAB) and Institut d'Anàlisi Econòmica (CSIC).
  • Handle: RePEc:aub:autbar:860.11
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    References listed on IDEAS

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    1. Lau, Lawrence J. & Jamison, Dean T. & Louat, Frederic F., 1991. "Education and productivity in developing countries : an aggregate production function approach," Policy Research Working Paper Series 612, The World Bank.
    2. Angel de la Fuente & Rafael Domenech, 2001. "Schooling Data, Technological Diffusion, and the Neoclassical Model," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 91(2), pages 323-327, May.
    3. Eric Hanushek & Ludger Woessmann, 2012. "Do better schools lead to more growth? Cognitive skills, economic outcomes, and causation," Journal of Economic Growth, Springer, vol. 17(4), pages 267-321, December.
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    6. Angel de la Fuente, 2003. "Human Capital in a global and knowledge-based economy, part II: assessment at the EU country level," Working Papers 98, Barcelona School of Economics.
    7. Mikael Lindahl & Alan B. Krueger, 2001. "Education for Growth: Why and for Whom?," Journal of Economic Literature, American Economic Association, vol. 39(4), pages 1101-1136, December.
    8. Serge Coulombe & Jean-François Tremblay, 2004. "Literacy, Human Capital and Growth," Working Papers 0407E, University of Ottawa, Department of Economics.
    9. Robert J. Barro, 1998. "Determinants of Economic Growth: A Cross-Country Empirical Study," MIT Press Books, The MIT Press, edition 1, volume 1, number 0262522543, December.
    10. Robert J. Barro, 1991. "Economic Growth in a Cross Section of Countries," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, President and Fellows of Harvard College, vol. 106(2), pages 407-443.
    11. Angel de la Fuente & Rafael Doménech, 2006. "Human Capital in Growth Regressions: How Much Difference Does Data Quality Make?," Journal of the European Economic Association, MIT Press, vol. 4(1), pages 1-36, March.
    12. de la Fuente, Angel & Domenech, Rafael, 2002. "Human Capital in Growth Regressions: How Much Difference Does Data Quality Make? An Update and Further Results," CEPR Discussion Papers 3587, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
    13. de la Fuente, Angel & Domenech, Rafael, 2002. "Educational Attainment in the OECD, 1960-95," CEPR Discussion Papers 3390, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
    14. Barro, Robert J. & Lee, Jong-Wha, 1993. "International comparisons of educational attainment," Journal of Monetary Economics, Elsevier, vol. 32(3), pages 363-394, December.
    15. Angel De la Fuente, 2011. "Human capital and productivity," Working Papers 1103, BBVA Bank, Economic Research Department.
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    20. Angel de la Fuente & Antonio Ciccone, 2003. "Human capital in a global and knowledge-based economy," UFAE and IAE Working Papers 562.03, Unitat de Fonaments de l'Anàlisi Econòmica (UAB) and Institut d'Anàlisi Econòmica (CSIC).
    21. Eric A. Hanushek & Ludger Woessmann, 2008. "The Role of Cognitive Skills in Economic Development," Journal of Economic Literature, American Economic Association, vol. 46(3), pages 607-668, September.
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    24. Javier Alonso & Jasmina Bjeletic & Carlos Herrera & Soledad Hormazabal & Ivonne Ordonez & Carolina Romero & David Tuesta, 2010. "A Balance of Pension Fund Infrastructure Investments: The Experience in Latin America," Working Papers 1003, BBVA Bank, Economic Research Department.
    25. Arnoldo López Marmolejo, 2011. "Effects of a Free Trade Agreement on the Exchange Rate Pass‐through to Import Prices," Review of International Economics, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 19(3), pages 475-493, August.
    26. Jerik Hanushek & Dennis Kimko, 2006. "Schooling, Labor-force Quality, and the Growth of Nations," Voprosy obrazovaniya / Educational Studies Moscow, National Research University Higher School of Economics, issue 1, pages 154-193.
    27. Ulrike Stierle-von Schütz & Michael H. Stierle & Frederic B. Jennings Jr & Adrian T.H. Kuah (ed.), 2008. "Regional Economic Policy in Europe," Books, Edward Elgar Publishing, number 13227.
    28. Behrman, Jere R. & Rosenzweig, Mark R., 1994. "Caveat emptor: Cross-country data on education and the labor force," Journal of Development Economics, Elsevier, vol. 44(1), pages 147-171, June.
    29. Barro, Robert J & Lee, Jong Wha, 1996. "International Measures of Schooling Years and Schooling Quality," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 86(2), pages 218-223, May.
    30. Kyriacou, George A., 1991. "Level and Growth Effects of Human Capital: A Cross-Country Study of the Convergence Hypothesis," Working Papers 91-26, C.V. Starr Center for Applied Economics, New York University.
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    Cited by:

    1. Creina Day, 2016. "Non-Scale Endogenous Growth with R&D and Human Capital," Scottish Journal of Political Economy, Scottish Economic Society, vol. 63(5), pages 443-467, November.
    2. Bartelsman, Eric & Dobbelaere, Sabien & Peters, Bettina, 2013. "Allocation of Human Capital and Innovation at the Frontier: Firm-Level Evidence on Germany and the Netherlands," IZA Discussion Papers 7540, Institute of Labor Economics (IZA).
    3. Beneito, Pilar & Rochina-Barrachina, María Engracia & Sanchis, Amparo, 2014. "Learning through experience in Research & Development: An empirical analysis with Spanish firms," Technological Forecasting and Social Change, Elsevier, vol. 88(C), pages 290-305.
    4. Josue Mbonigaba & Akinola Gbenga Wilfred, 2019. "Productivity effects of human capital: an empirical investigation of health and higher education in South Africa," Zbornik radova Ekonomskog fakulteta u Rijeci/Proceedings of Rijeka Faculty of Economics, University of Rijeka, Faculty of Economics and Business, vol. 37(1), pages 277-301.
    5. Daniel Santín & Gabriela Sicilia, 2018. "Using DEA for measuring teachers’ performance and the impact on students’ outcomes: evidence for Spain," Journal of Productivity Analysis, Springer, vol. 49(1), pages 1-15, February.
    6. Mikaela Backman, 2014. "Human capital in firms and regions: Impact on firm productivity," Papers in Regional Science, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 93(3), pages 557-575, August.
    7. Mason, Geoff & O'Leary, Brigid & Vecchi, Michela, 2012. "Certified and uncertified skills and productivity growth performance: Cross-country evidence at industry level," Labour Economics, Elsevier, vol. 19(3), pages 351-360.
    8. Andre Jungmittag & Paul J. J. Welfens, 2020. "EU-US trade post-trump perspectives: TTIP aspects related to foreign direct investment and innovation," International Economics and Economic Policy, Springer, vol. 17(1), pages 259-294, February.
    9. Antonin Bergeaud & Gilbert Cette & Rémy Lecat, 2018. "The role of production factor quality and technology diffusion in twentieth-century productivity growth," Cliometrica, Journal of Historical Economics and Econometric History, Association Française de Cliométrie (AFC), vol. 12(1), pages 61-97, January.
    10. Anneleen Vandeplas & Anna Thum-Thysen, 2019. "Skills Mismatch and Productivity in the EU," European Economy - Discussion Papers 100, Directorate General Economic and Financial Affairs (DG ECFIN), European Commission.
    11. Lenkei, Balint & Mustafa, Ghulam & Vecchi, Michela, 2018. "Growth in emerging economies: Is there a role for education?," Economic Modelling, Elsevier, vol. 73(C), pages 240-253.
    12. Andre Jungmittag & Paul J.J. Welfens, 2016. "Beyond EU-US Trade Dynamics: TTIP Effects Related to Foreign Direct Investment and Innovation," EIIW Discussion paper disbei212, Universitätsbibliothek Wuppertal, University Library.
    13. Angel de la Fuente, 2011. "Human Capital and Productivity," Working Papers 530, Barcelona School of Economics.
    14. Aparicio, Juan & Crespo-Cebada, Eva & Pedraja-Chaparro, Francisco & Santín, Daniel, 2017. "Comparing school ownership performance using a pseudo-panel database: A Malmquist-type index approach," European Journal of Operational Research, Elsevier, vol. 256(2), pages 533-542.
    15. Simachev, Yu. & Kuzyk, M. & Fedyunina, A. & Yurevich, M., 2020. "Labor productivity in Russian companies: How to foster sustainable growth," Journal of the New Economic Association, New Economic Association, vol. 48(4), pages 205-217.
    16. Koye Gerry Bokana & Gbenga Wilfred Akinola, 2017. "Productivity effects of higher education human capital in selected countries of Sub-Saharan Africa," Zbornik radova Ekonomskog fakulteta u Rijeci/Proceedings of Rijeka Faculty of Economics, University of Rijeka, Faculty of Economics and Business, vol. 35(1), pages 173-198.
    17. John Bradley & Gerhard Untiedt, 2012. "Assessing the impact of EU Cohesion Policy: What can economic models tell us?," HERMIN Economic Papers 2-2012, HERMIN.
    18. Crass, Dirk & Peters, Bettina, 2014. "Intangible assets and firm-level productivity," ZEW Discussion Papers 14-120, ZEW - Leibniz Centre for European Economic Research.
    19. Huanjia Ma & Raquel Ortega-Argilés & Matthew Lyons, 2024. "UK Levelling Up R&D mission effects: A multi-region input-output approach," MIOIR Working Paper Series 2024-03, The Manchester Institute of Innovation Research (MIoIR), The University of Manchester.
    20. Ooft, Gavin & Eckhorst, Karel, 2013. "Human Capital Development and Economic Growth in Suriname," EconStor Preprints 215530, ZBW - Leibniz Information Centre for Economics.

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    More about this item

    Keywords

    human capital; productivity; growth; measurement error;
    All these keywords.

    JEL classification:

    • O40 - Economic Development, Innovation, Technological Change, and Growth - - Economic Growth and Aggregate Productivity - - - General
    • I20 - Health, Education, and Welfare - - Education - - - General
    • O30 - Economic Development, Innovation, Technological Change, and Growth - - Innovation; Research and Development; Technological Change; Intellectual Property Rights - - - General
    • C19 - Mathematical and Quantitative Methods - - Econometric and Statistical Methods and Methodology: General - - - Other

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