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Economic Openness and Educational Expansion


  • Mark Gradstein
  • Denis Nikitin
  • Heng-fu Zou


This paper documents the vast expansion of schooling over the past several decades. It begins by considering international panel data and makes the observation that poor countries today have higher average education levels than countries at the same level of economic development used to have in the past. It is then argued that this trend can be attributed to the enhanced demand for schooling because of the increase in openness. The analysis of educational expansion in cross-country framework and in China's provinces provides support for the view that educational expansion is related to economy's openness.

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  • Mark Gradstein & Denis Nikitin & Heng-fu Zou, 2012. "Economic Openness and Educational Expansion," CEMA Working Papers 540, China Economics and Management Academy, Central University of Finance and Economics.
  • Handle: RePEc:cuf:wpaper:540

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    1. Gundlach, Erich & Wossmann, Ludger & Gmelin, Jens, 2001. "The Decline of Schooling Productivity in OECD Countries," Economic Journal, Royal Economic Society, vol. 111(471), pages 135-147, May.
    2. Robert J. Barro, 1991. "Economic Growth in a Cross Section of Countries," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, Oxford University Press, vol. 106(2), pages 407-443.
    3. Mark Gradstein & Moshe Justman & Volker Meier, 2004. "The Political Economy of Education: Implications for Growth and Inequality," MIT Press Books, The MIT Press, edition 1, volume 1, number 0262072564, January.
    4. Bartel, Ann P & Lichtenberg, Frank R, 1987. "The Comparative Advantage of Educated Workers in Implementing New Technology," The Review of Economics and Statistics, MIT Press, vol. 69(1), pages 1-11, February.
    5. Tsang, Mun C., 1996. "Financial reform of basic education in China," Economics of Education Review, Elsevier, vol. 15(4), pages 423-444, October.
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