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The State, Socialization, and Private Schooling: When Will Governments Support Alternate Producers?

Author

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  • Pritchett, Lant

    (Harvard University)

  • Viarengo, Martina

    (Graduate Institute, Geneva and Center for International Development, Harvard University)

Abstract

Understanding the institutional features that can improve learning outcomes and reduce inequality is a top priority for international and development organizations around the world. Economists appear to have a good case for support to non-governmental alternatives as suppliers of schooling. However, unlike other policy domains, freer international trade or privatization, economists have been remarkably unsuccessful in promoting the adoption of this idea. We develop a simple general positive model of why governments typically produce schooling which introduces the key notion of the lack of verifiability of socialization and instruction of beliefs, which makes third party contracting for socialization problematic. We use the model to explain variations around the world in levels of private schooling. We also predict the circumstances in which efforts to promote the different alternatives to government production--like charter, voucher, and scholarship--are likely to be successful.

Suggested Citation

  • Pritchett, Lant & Viarengo, Martina, 2013. "The State, Socialization, and Private Schooling: When Will Governments Support Alternate Producers?," Working Paper Series rwp13-050, Harvard University, John F. Kennedy School of Government.
  • Handle: RePEc:ecl:harjfk:rwp13-050
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    References listed on IDEAS

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    1. Jimenez, E. & Lockheed, M.E., 1995. "Public and Private Secondary Education in Developing Countries. A Comparative Study," World Bank - Discussion Papers 309, World Bank.
    2. Robert J. Barro & Rachel M. McCleary, 2005. "Which Countries Have State Religions?," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, Oxford University Press, vol. 120(4), pages 1331-1370.
    3. Kingdon, Geeta, 1996. "The Quality and Efficiency of Private and Public Education: A Case-Study of Urban India," Oxford Bulletin of Economics and Statistics, Department of Economics, University of Oxford, vol. 58(1), pages 57-82, February.
    4. McCleary, Rachel & Barro, Robert, 2002. "Religion and Political Economy in an International Panel," Scholarly Articles 3221170, Harvard University Department of Economics.
    5. Blaug, Mark, 1976. "The Empirical Status of Human Capital Theory: A Slightly Jaundiced Survey," Journal of Economic Literature, American Economic Association, vol. 14(3), pages 827-855, September.
    6. Hsieh, Chang-Tai & Urquiola, Miguel, 2006. "The effects of generalized school choice on achievement and stratification: Evidence from Chile's voucher program," Journal of Public Economics, Elsevier, vol. 90(8-9), pages 1477-1503, September.
    7. Gradstein, Mark & Justman, Moshe, 2005. "The melting pot and school choice," Journal of Public Economics, Elsevier, vol. 89(5-6), pages 871-896, June.
    8. Andrabi, Tahir & Das, Jishnu & Khwaja, Asim Ijaz & Zajonc, Tristan, 2005. "Religious school enrollment in Pakistan : a look at the data," Policy Research Working Paper Series 3521, The World Bank.
    9. Lott, John R, Jr, 1990. "An Explanation for Public Provision of Schooling: The Importance of Indoctrination," Journal of Law and Economics, University of Chicago Press, vol. 33(1), pages 199-231, April.
    10. Flanagan, Robert J., 1998. "Were communists good human capitalists? The case of the Czech Republic," Labour Economics, Elsevier, vol. 5(3), pages 295-312, September.
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    Cited by:

    1. repec:eee:exehis:v:67:y:2018:i:c:p:18-39 is not listed on IDEAS
    2. repec:eee:reecon:v:71:y:2017:i:2:p:356-371 is not listed on IDEAS
    3. Lant Pritchett, 2014. "The Risks to Education Systems from Design Mismatch and Global Isomorphism," CID Working Papers 277, Center for International Development at Harvard University.
    4. Cinnirella, Francesco & Schueler, Ruth, 2018. "Nation building: The role of central spending in education," Explorations in Economic History, Elsevier, vol. 67(C), pages 18-39.
    5. Pritchett, Lant, 2014. "The risks to education systems from design mismatch and global isomorphism: Concepts, with examples from India," WIDER Working Paper Series 039, World Institute for Development Economic Research (UNU-WIDER).
    6. Besley, Timothy & Ghatak, Maitreesh, 2017. "Public–private partnerships for the provision of public goods: Theory and an application to NGOs," Research in Economics, Elsevier, vol. 71(2), pages 356-371.
    7. repec:kap:jecgro:v:22:y:2017:i:3:d:10.1007_s10887-017-9142-2 is not listed on IDEAS

    More about this item

    JEL classification:

    • O12 - Economic Development, Innovation, Technological Change, and Growth - - Economic Development - - - Microeconomic Analyses of Economic Development
    • I20 - Health, Education, and Welfare - - Education - - - General
    • H50 - Public Economics - - National Government Expenditures and Related Policies - - - General

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