IDEAS home Printed from
   My bibliography  Save this paper

Ethnic patterns of returns to education in Bulgaria: Do minorities have an incentive to invest in education?


  • Claudia Trentini

    (United Nations Economic Commission for Europe)


It is widely accepted that disparities in education contribute to the poor labor market outcomes experienced by ethnic minority groups and consequently to their poverty. However, incentives to invest in education are significantly diminished if individuals are discriminated in the labor market and precluded from access to employment. In this paper we analyze differential educational benefits in Bulgaria and compare Roma returns to education with the majority population and the Turkish minority. We show that both ethnic minority groups have lower educational levels and employment rates than the majority population and that they also have lower returns to education. However, the gap in returns to education is much wider for the Roma with respect to both employment and labour-market earnings. The evidence suggests that this group is more vulnerable to discrimination, with a high percentage of the employment gap unexplained by differences in observable skills or characteristics.

Suggested Citation

  • Claudia Trentini, 2011. "Ethnic patterns of returns to education in Bulgaria: Do minorities have an incentive to invest in education?," ECE Discussion Papers Series 2011_1, UNECE.
  • Handle: RePEc:ece:dispap:2011_1

    Download full text from publisher

    File URL:
    File Function: First version, 2011
    Download Restriction: no

    More about this item


    minorities; Roma; discrimination; returns to education; transition;
    All these keywords.

    JEL classification:

    • I24 - Health, Education, and Welfare - - Education - - - Education and Inequality
    • J15 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Demographic Economics - - - Economics of Minorities, Races, Indigenous Peoples, and Immigrants; Non-labor Discrimination
    • J7 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Labor Discrimination
    • P36 - Political Economy and Comparative Economic Systems - - Socialist Institutions and Their Transitions - - - Consumer Economics; Health; Education and Training; Welfare, Income, Wealth, and Poverty

    NEP fields

    This paper has been announced in the following NEP Reports:


    Access and download statistics


    All material on this site has been provided by the respective publishers and authors. You can help correct errors and omissions. When requesting a correction, please mention this item's handle: RePEc:ece:dispap:2011_1. See general information about how to correct material in RePEc.

    If you have authored this item and are not yet registered with RePEc, we encourage you to do it here. This allows to link your profile to this item. It also allows you to accept potential citations to this item that we are uncertain about.

    We have no bibliographic references for this item. You can help adding them by using this form .

    If you know of missing items citing this one, you can help us creating those links by adding the relevant references in the same way as above, for each refering item. If you are a registered author of this item, you may also want to check the "citations" tab in your RePEc Author Service profile, as there may be some citations waiting for confirmation.

    For technical questions regarding this item, or to correct its authors, title, abstract, bibliographic or download information, contact: Robert Shelburne (email available below). General contact details of provider: .

    Please note that corrections may take a couple of weeks to filter through the various RePEc services.

    IDEAS is a RePEc service. RePEc uses bibliographic data supplied by the respective publishers.