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Landownership Concentration and the Expansion of Education

  • Francesco Cinnirella

    ()

    (Ifo Institute and CESifo, Munich)

  • Erik Hornung

    ()

    (Ifo Institute, Munich)

This paper studies the effect of landownership concentration on school enrollment for nineteenth-century Prussia. Prussia is an interesting laboratory given its decentralized educational system and the presence of heterogeneous agricultural institutions. We find that landownership concentration, a proxy for the institution of serf labor, has a negative effect on schooling. This effect diminishes substantially in the second half of the century. Causality of this relationship is confirmed by introducing soil-texture to identify exogenous farm size variation. Panel estimates further rule out unobserved heterogeneity. We argue that serfdom hampered peasants’ demand for education whereas the successive emancipation triggered a demand thereof.

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Paper provided by European Historical Economics Society (EHES) in its series Working Papers with number 0010.

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Length: 50 pages
Date of creation: Oct 2011
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Handle: RePEc:hes:wpaper:0010
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