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Was it worth it? An empirical analysis of over-education among Ph.D. recipients in Italy

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  • Giuseppe Lucio Gaeta

    () (University of Naples L’Orientale, Department of Social Sciences and Humanities)

Abstract

This paper aims to provide an empirical examination of factors associated with overeducation among Ph.D. graduates in Italy. Our investigation is based on recently released data collected by the Italian National Institute of Statistics by means of interviews with a large sample of Ph.D. recipients, carried out a few years after they obtained their Ph.D. degree. We measured the mismatch between their current job and previous Ph.D. studies using two direct subjective evaluations of over-education, which distinguish between the usefulness of the Ph.D. title to get the current job position and to perform the current work activities. Even if the incidence of over-education varies according to the measurement applied, we found that it is highly widespread among Ph.D. recipients. Our econometric analyses are aimed at identifying factors associated with over-education and are based on the standard probit model and the bivariate probit model with sample selection which allows to control for self selection into employment. Our results show that over-education is significantly correlated with: i) a number of Ph-D. related variables, such as the scientific field of study, having attended courses or visiting periods abroad; ii) some job-related characteristics, such as working in the academia or being mainly involved in research related activities; iii) the channel of access to the job; iv) residential location. This paper contributes to the literature focusing on job-education mismatch by providing, to the best of our knowledge, the first empirical analysis of over-education among Ph.D. recipients in Italy; moreover, it provides some useful insights to evaluate the professional doctoral graduates in Italy.

Suggested Citation

  • Giuseppe Lucio Gaeta, 2013. "Was it worth it? An empirical analysis of over-education among Ph.D. recipients in Italy," Working Papers 1302, c.MET-05 - Centro Interuniversitario di Economia Applicata alle Politiche per L'industria, lo Sviluppo locale e l'Internazionalizzazione.
  • Handle: RePEc:cme:wpaper:1302
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    1. repec:spr:italej:v:3:y:2017:i:2:d:10.1007_s40797-017-0053-3 is not listed on IDEAS
    2. Corina CARA & Tudor TOCILA & Adriana ZAIT, 2015. "Exploring Phd Students’ Concerns Regarding Doctoral Programs In Economics And Business Administration," Review of Economic and Business Studies, Alexandru Ioan Cuza University, Faculty of Economics and Business Administration, issue 15, pages 33-43, June.
    3. Barbara Ermini & Luca Papi & Francesca Scaturro, 2016. "Over-education among italian Ph.D. graduates. Does the crisis make a difference?," Mo.Fi.R. Working Papers 126, Money and Finance Research group (Mo.Fi.R.) - Univ. Politecnica Marche - Dept. Economic and Social Sciences.
    4. 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).
    5. Barbara Ermini & Luca Papi & Francesca Scaturro, 2017. "Over education and the great recession. The case of italian PH.D graduates," Working Papers 420, Universita' Politecnica delle Marche (I), Dipartimento di Scienze Economiche e Sociali.
    6. Giuseppe Lucio Gaeta & Giuseppe Lubrano Lavadera & Francesco Pastore, 2017. "Much Ado about Nothing? The Wage Penalty of Holding a PhD Degree but Not a PhD Job Position," Research in Labor Economics,in: Skill Mismatch in Labor Markets, volume 45, pages 243-277 Emerald Publishing Ltd.
    7. Gaeta, Giuseppe Lucio & Lubrano Lavadera, Giuseppe & Pastore, Francesco, 2016. "Much Ado About Nothing? The Wage Effect of Holding a Ph.D. Degree But Not a Ph.D. Job Position," IZA Discussion Papers 10051, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).
    8. Dsouza, Alwin & Mishra, Ashok. K., 2016. "Adoption and Abandonment of Conservation Technologies in Developing Economies: The Case of South Asia," 2016 Annual Meeting, July 31-August 2, 2016, Boston, Massachusetts 235243, Agricultural and Applied Economics Association.

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    Keywords

    over-education; Ph.D. recipients; self-selection;

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