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College Choice And Earnings Among University Graduates In Sweden

  • Eliasson, Kent

    ()

    (National Institute for Working Life)

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    This thesis consists of three papers that examine college choice and earnings among university graduates in Sweden. Paper [I] analyzes how geographical accessibility to higher education affects university enrollment decisions in Sweden. The empirical findings show that the probability of enrollment in university education increases with accessibility to university education. The results also indicate that accessibility adds to the likelihood of attending a university within the region of residence. Both these findings are robust with regard to different specifications of accessibility. The empirical results furthermore indicate that the enrollment decisions of individuals with a less privileged background are more sensitive to accessibility to university education than are the decisions of individuals from a more favorable background. Paper [II] examines the effect on earnings of graduating from five different college groups. The paper relies on selection on observables and linear regression to identify the earnings effect of college choice. Contrary to the majority of previous Swedish studies, we do not find any systematic differences in estimated earnings between college graduates from the different college groups. This finding does not only hold when considering all college graduates, but also when focusing on men and women separately as well as when considering college graduates in two specific fields of education. The results suggest that an estimator of the earnings effects of college choice that does not properly adjust for ability is likely to be substantially biased. Paper [III] estimates the causal effect on earnings of graduating from old universities rather than new universities/university colleges. The study compares estimates from several different matching methods and linear regression. We cannot find any significant differences in earnings between graduates from the two groups of colleges. This holds for male and female sub-samples covering all majors, as well as male and female sub-samples covering two broad fields of education. The results are robust with regard to different methods of propensity score matching and regression adjustment. Furthermore, the results indicate little sensitivity with regard to the empirical support in the data and alternative specifications of the propensity scores.

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    File URL: http://www.econ.umu.se/DownloadAsset.action?contentId=49257&languageId=3&assetKey=ues693
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    Paper provided by Umeå University, Department of Economics in its series Umeå Economic Studies with number 693.

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    Length: 124 pages
    Date of creation: 11 Sep 2006
    Date of revision:
    Handle: RePEc:hhs:umnees:0693
    Contact details of provider: Postal: Department of Economics, Umeå University, S-901 87 Umeå, Sweden
    Phone: 090 - 786 61 42
    Fax: 090 - 77 23 02
    Web page: http://www.econ.umu.se/
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    12. Jeffrey Smith & Petra Todd, 2003. "Does Matching Overcome Lalonde's Critique of Nonexperimental Estimators?," University of Western Ontario, CIBC Centre for Human Capital and Productivity Working Papers 20035, University of Western Ontario, CIBC Centre for Human Capital and Productivity.
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    17. Dan A. Black & Jeffrey Smith, 2003. "How Robust is the Evidence on the Effects of College Quality? Evidence From Matching," University of Western Ontario, CIBC Centre for Human Capital and Productivity Working Papers 20033, University of Western Ontario, CIBC Centre for Human Capital and Productivity.
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    24. Augurzky, Boris & Schmidt, Christoph M., 2001. "The Propensity Score: A Means to An End," IZA Discussion Papers 271, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).
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    26. Eliasson, Kent, 2006. "The Role of Ability in Estimating the Returns to College Choice: New Swedish Evidence," Umeå Economic Studies 691, Umeå University, Department of Economics.
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