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A Theory of Education and Health

Author

Listed:
  • Titus Galama

    (University of Southern California)

  • Hans van Kippersluis

    (Erasmus School of Economics)

Abstract

This paper presents a unified theory of human capital with both health capital and, what we term, skill capital endogenously determined within the model. By considering joint investment in health capital and in skill capital, the model highlights similarities and differences in these two important components of human capital. Health is distinct from skill: health is important to longevity, provides direct utility, provides time that can be devoted to work or other uses, is valued later in life, and eventually declines, no matter how much one invests in it (a dismal fact of life). Lifetime earnings are strongly multiplicative in skill and health, so that investment in skill capital raises the return to investment in health capital, and vice versa. The theory provides a conceptual framework for empirical and theoretical studies aimed at understanding the complex relationship between education and health, and generates several new testable predictions.

Suggested Citation

  • Titus Galama & Hans van Kippersluis, 2015. "A Theory of Education and Health," Working Papers 2015-007, Human Capital and Economic Opportunity Working Group.
  • Handle: RePEc:hka:wpaper:2015-007
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    Cited by:

    1. Atif Awad, 2021. "Which Contributes More to Economic Growth in the MENA Region: Health or Education? An Empirical Investigation," Journal of the Knowledge Economy, Springer;Portland International Center for Management of Engineering and Technology (PICMET), vol. 12(3), pages 1119-1133, September.
    2. Clarke, Damian & Mühlrad, Hanna, 2016. "The Impact of Abortion Legalization on Fertility and Maternal Mortality: New Evidence from Mexico," Working Papers in Economics 661, University of Gothenburg, Department of Economics.
    3. Yu Aoki & Lualhati Santiago, 2015. "Fertility, Health and Education of UK Immigrants: The Role of English Language Skills," CINCH Working Paper Series 1510, Universitaet Duisburg-Essen, Competent in Competition and Health, revised Aug 2015.
    4. Titus J. Galama & Adriana Lleras-Muney & Hans van Kippersluis, 2018. "The Effect of Education on Health and Mortality: A Review of Experimental and Quasi-Experimental Evidence," NBER Working Papers 24225, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    5. Carbone, Jared C. & Kverndokk, Snorre, 2014. "Individual investments in education and health," HERO Online Working Paper Series 2014:1, University of Oslo, Health Economics Research Programme.
    6. Atif Awad, 0. "Which Contributes More to Economic Growth in the MENA Region: Health or Education? An Empirical Investigation," Journal of the Knowledge Economy, Springer;Portland International Center for Management of Engineering and Technology (PICMET), vol. 0, pages 1-15.

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    More about this item

    Keywords

    health investment; lifecycle model; human capital; health capital; optimal control;
    All these keywords.

    JEL classification:

    • D91 - Microeconomics - - Micro-Based Behavioral Economics - - - Role and Effects of Psychological, Emotional, Social, and Cognitive Factors on Decision Making
    • I10 - Health, Education, and Welfare - - Health - - - General
    • I12 - Health, Education, and Welfare - - Health - - - Health Behavior
    • J00 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - General - - - General
    • J24 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Demand and Supply of Labor - - - Human Capital; Skills; Occupational Choice; Labor Productivity

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