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Functional literacy, educational attainment and earnings - evidence from the international adult literacy survey

Author

Listed:
  • Kevin Denny

    () (Institute for Fiscal Studies and University College Dublin)

  • Harmon, Harmon

    (Institute for Fiscal Studies)

  • Sandra Redmond

    (Institute for Fiscal Studies)

Abstract

In this paper a rich and innovative dataset, the International Adult Literacy Survey, is used to examine the impact of functional literacy on earnings. The IALS surveys 12 OECD countries and sub-regions via a consistent questionnaire and includes a number of tests of numeracy and literacy, as well as basic labour market information. This paper examines the effect of these skills on labour market earnings for the Republic of Ireland, Northern Ireland, and for Great Britain. The estimates suggest that while ability has a role in determining earnings the dominant factor remains formal education. It is shown that, particularly for Great Britain, there is a positive interaction between the test score and education in determining earnings.

Suggested Citation

  • Kevin Denny & Harmon, Harmon & Sandra Redmond, 2000. "Functional literacy, educational attainment and earnings - evidence from the international adult literacy survey," IFS Working Papers W00/09, Institute for Fiscal Studies.
  • Handle: RePEc:ifs:ifsewp:00/09
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    References listed on IDEAS

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    Cited by:

    1. O'Connell, Philip J. & Russell, Helen & FitzGerald, John, 2006. "Human Resources," Book Chapters,in: Morgenroth, Edgar (ed.), Ex-Ante Evaluation of the Investment Priorities for the National Development Plan 2007-2013 Economic and Social Research Institute (ESRI).
    2. Lane, Philip & McCoy, Selina & Smith, Stephen & Smyth, Emer & Van Soest, Arthur & Walsh, John R., 2003. "Budget Perspectives 2004," Research Series, Economic and Social Research Institute (ESRI), number BMI172 edited by Callan, Tim & Doris, Aedin & McCoy, Daniel.
    3. Hanushek, Eric A. & Woessmann, Ludger, 2011. "The Economics of International Differences in Educational Achievement," Handbook of the Economics of Education, Elsevier.
    4. Fahey, Tony & Russell, Helen & FitzGerald, John, 2006. "Childcare," Book Chapters,in: Morgenroth, Edgar (ed.), Ex-Ante Evaluation of the Investment Priorities for the National Development Plan 2007-2013 Economic and Social Research Institute (ESRI).
    5. Denny, Kevin & Harmon, Colm, 2000. "Education Policy Reform and the Return to Schooling from Instrumental Variables," CEPR Discussion Papers 2518, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
    6. Morgenroth, Edgar & FitzGerald, John & FitzGerald, John, 2006. "Productive Sector," Book Chapters,in: Morgenroth, Edgar (ed.), Ex-Ante Evaluation of the Investment Priorities for the National Development Plan 2007-2013, chapter 20, pages 257-277 Economic and Social Research Institute (ESRI).
    7. Kristof De Witte & Wim Groot & Henri?tte Maassen van den Brink, 2012. "The Efficiency of Education in Generating Literacy: A Stochastic Frontier Approach," Review of Economics & Finance, Better Advances Press, Canada, vol. 2, pages 25-37, February.
    8. Morgenroth, Edgar & FitzGerald, John & FitzGerald, John, 2006. "Summary and Conclusions," Book Chapters,in: Morgenroth, Edgar (ed.), Ex-Ante Evaluation of the Investment Priorities for the National Development Plan 2007-2013, chapter 24, pages 317-333 Economic and Social Research Institute (ESRI).
      • Baker, Terence J. & FitzGerald, John & Honohan, Patrick & FitzGerald, John & Honohan, Patrick, 1996. "Summary and Conclusions," Book Chapters,in: Baker, Terence J. (ed.), Economic Implications for Ireland of EMU, chapter 12, pages 339-352 Economic and Social Research Institute (ESRI).
    9. Kitty Stewart, 2002. "Measuring Well-Being and Exclusion in Europes Regions," CASE Papers case53, Centre for Analysis of Social Exclusion, LSE.
    10. Fahey, Tony & Scott, Susan & FitzGerald, John, 2006. "Sports and Arts," Book Chapters,in: Morgenroth, Edgar (ed.), Ex-Ante Evaluation of the Investment Priorities for the National Development Plan 2007-2013 Economic and Social Research Institute (ESRI).
    11. McCoy, Selina & Smyth, Emer, 2003. "Educational Expenditure: Implications for Equality," Papers BP2004/4, Economic and Social Research Institute (ESRI).
    12. Morgenroth, Edgar & FitzGerald, John (ed.), 2006. "Ex-ante Evaluation of the Investment Priorities for the National Development Plan 2007-2013," Research Series, Economic and Social Research Institute (ESRI), number PRS59.
    13. Tate, Robert & Finlayson, Greg & MacWilliam, Leonard & Wiley, Miriam M. & Morgenroth, Edgar & FitzGerald, John, 2006. "Health," Book Chapters,in: Morgenroth, Edgar (ed.), Ex-Ante Evaluation of the Investment Priorities for the National Development Plan 2007-2013 Economic and Social Research Institute (ESRI).
    14. Rocha, Maúna Soares de Baldini & Ponczek, Vladimir Pinheiro, 2010. "Impacto da alfabetização de adultos sobre salário e emprego," Textos para discussão 215, FGV/EESP - Escola de Economia de São Paulo, Getulio Vargas Foundation (Brazil).

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