Does education or underlying human capital explain liberal economic attitudes?
There is a worldwide tendency for more educated people to trust in markets, private business, and trade, and to distrust government regulation and public provision relative to the less educated even in countries where people generally favor regulation (Aghion, et al. 2010). Individual survey data drawn from the Russian RMLS indicate that for Russia, as for most of the world, respondents with higher levels of education are more likely to trust private businesses and privatization, to distrust government regulation, and to favor lesser provision of services by the State (vs. the private sector). This matches the macro survey findings of Aghion et al. (2010) for the transition economies and the work of Caplan (2001, 2002, 2007). However, it is not clear whether education is a causal factor in these preferences or whether education is proxying for different levels of cognitive ability, health, or other forms of human capital. We use individual height data as instruments for formal education to remove the contemporaneous effects of schooling itself on the education-trust link. We find that this IV estimation leaves us with clear and persistent links between education and market friendly attitudes in Russia. This human capital effect is also quite independent of the role of age in determining liberal attitudes and is not simply a cohort effect. This seems to conform to the worldwide observation that – whatever the independent changing institutions – greater health and cognitive ability seem to promote market liberal beliefs in and of themselves. In contrast, socially liberal attitudes are not correlated with education in the IV regressions
|Date of creation:||2013|
|Publication status:||Published in WP BRP Series: Economics / EC, November 2013, pages 1-13|
|Contact details of provider:|| Postal: Myasnitskaya 20, Moscow 101000|
Web page: http://www.hse.ru/
More information through EDIRC
Please report citation or reference errors to , or , if you are the registered author of the cited work, log in to your RePEc Author Service profile, click on "citations" and make appropriate adjustments.:
- Dee, Thomas S., 2004.
"Are there civic returns to education?,"
Journal of Public Economics,
Elsevier, vol. 88(9-10), pages 1697-1720, August.
- Caplan, Bryan, 2001. "What Makes People Think Like Economists? Evidence on Economic Cognition from the "Survey of Americans and Economists on the Economy."," Journal of Law and Economics, University of Chicago Press, vol. 44(2), pages 395-426, October.
When requesting a correction, please mention this item's handle: RePEc:hig:wpaper:40/ec/2013. See general information about how to correct material in RePEc.
For technical questions regarding this item, or to correct its authors, title, abstract, bibliographic or download information, contact: (Shamil Abdulaev)or (Victoria Elkina)
If references are entirely missing, you can add them using this form.