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The gender gap of returns on education across West European countries


  • Mendolicchio, Concetta

    () (Institut für Arbeitsmarkt- und Berufsforschung (IAB), Nürnberg [Institute for Employment Research, Nuremberg, Germany])

  • Rhein, Thomas

    () (Institut für Arbeitsmarkt- und Berufsforschung (IAB), Nürnberg [Institute for Employment Research, Nuremberg, Germany])


"We study the returns on education in Europe in a comparative perspective. We extend the model of de la Fuente [(2003). Human Capital in a Global and Knowledgebased Economy. part II: Assessment at the EU Country Level. Report for the European Commission], by estimating the values of the relevant parameters for men and women and introducing several variables specifically related to maternity leaves and benefits. As a preliminary step, we evaluate the effect of education on the wage profile. We estimate the Mincerian coefficients for 12 West European countries using the EU-SILC data for 2007 and use them as input in the optimisation problem of the individual to calibrate the model. Finally, we analyse the impact and relevance of several public policy variables. In particular, we evaluate the elasticities of the returns on education with respect to unemployment benefits, marginal and average tax rates, maternity leaves and childcare benefits." (Author's abstract, IAB-Doku) ((en))

Suggested Citation

  • Mendolicchio, Concetta & Rhein, Thomas, 2011. "The gender gap of returns on education across West European countries," IAB Discussion Paper 201120, Institut für Arbeitsmarkt- und Berufsforschung (IAB), Nürnberg [Institute for Employment Research, Nuremberg, Germany].
  • Handle: RePEc:iab:iabdpa:201120

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    References listed on IDEAS

    1. Giorgio Brunello & Margherita Fort & Guglielmo Weber, 2009. "Changes in Compulsory Schooling, Education and the Distribution of Wages in Europe," Economic Journal, Royal Economic Society, vol. 119(536), pages 516-539, March.
    2. Angel de la Fuente & Rafael Doménech, 2006. "Human Capital in Growth Regressions: How Much Difference Does Data Quality Make?," Journal of the European Economic Association, MIT Press, vol. 4(1), pages 1-36, March.
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    4. Busch, Anne & Holst, Elke, 2011. "Gender-Specific Occupational Segregation, Glass Ceiling Effects, and Earnings in Managerial Positions: Results of a Fixed Effects Model," IZA Discussion Papers 5448, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).
    5. Angel de la Fuente & Juan Francisco Jimeno, 2004. "The private and fiscal returns to schooling and the effect of public policies on private incentives to invest in education: a general framework and some results for the EU," Working Papers 152, Barcelona Graduate School of Economics.
    6. Biagetti, Marco & Scicchitano, Sergio, 2009. "Wage inequality and returns to schooling in Europe: a semi-parametric approach using EU-SILC data," MPRA Paper 19060, University Library of Munich, Germany.
    7. Martins, Pedro S. & Pereira, Pedro T., 2004. "Does education reduce wage inequality? Quantile regression evidence from 16 countries," Labour Economics, Elsevier, vol. 11(3), pages 355-371, June.
    8. James J. Heckman & Lance J. Lochner & Petra E. Todd, 2008. "Earnings Functions and Rates of Return," Journal of Human Capital, University of Chicago Press, vol. 2(1), pages 1-31.
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    12. Santiago Budría & Pedro Telhado-Pereira, 2011. "Educational Qualifications And Wage Inequality: Evidence For Europe," Revista de Economia Aplicada, Universidad de Zaragoza, Departamento de Estructura Economica y Economia Publica, vol. 19(2), pages 5-34, Autumn.
    13. Heckman, James, 2013. "Sample selection bias as a specification error," Applied Econometrics, Publishing House "SINERGIA PRESS", vol. 31(3), pages 129-137.
    14. Colm Harmon & Hessel Oosterbeek & Ian Walker, 2003. "The Returns to Education: Microeconomics," Journal of Economic Surveys, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 17(2), pages 115-156, April.
    15. Middendorf, Torge, 2008. "Returns to Education in Europe – Detailed Results from a Harmonized Survey," Ruhr Economic Papers 65, RWI - Leibniz-Institut für Wirtschaftsforschung, Ruhr-University Bochum, TU Dortmund University, University of Duisburg-Essen.
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    17. Achatz, Juliane & Gartner, Hermann & Glück, Timea, 2004. "Bonus oder Bias? Mechanismen geschlechtsspezifischer Entlohnung," IAB Discussion Paper 200402, Institut für Arbeitsmarkt- und Berufsforschung (IAB), Nürnberg [Institute for Employment Research, Nuremberg, Germany].
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    Cited by:

    1. Marco Caliendo & Jens Hogenacker & Steffen Künn & Frank Wießner, 2012. "Alte Idee, neues Programm: Der Gründungszuschuss als Nachfolger von Überbrückungsgeld und Ich-AG," Journal for Labour Market Research, Springer;Institute for Employment Research/ Institut für Arbeitsmarkt- und Berufsforschung (IAB), vol. 45(2), pages 99-123, July.
    2. Martina Mysikova & Jiri Vecernik, 2015. "Returns to education in transition and advanced European countries: The role of an expansion of higher education," Investigaciones de Economía de la Educación volume 10,in: Marta Rahona López & Jennifer Graves (ed.), Investigaciones de Economía de la Educación 10, edition 1, volume 10, chapter 44, pages 865-886 Asociación de Economía de la Educación.

    More about this item


    Bildungsertrag - internationaler Vergleich; Humankapital; geschlechtsspezifische Faktoren; Westeuropa; Österreich; Belgien; Dänemark; Frankreich; Bundesrepublik Deutschland; Irland; Italien; Luxemburg; Niederlande; Portugal; Spanien; Schweden;

    JEL classification:

    • I21 - Health, Education, and Welfare - - Education - - - Analysis of Education

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