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Mapping the European regional educational distribution: Educational attainment and inequality

The geography of education, especially at sub-national level, is a huge black box. Basically nothing is known about the distribution of educational attainment and inequality across regions in Europe. This paper addresses this gap in the literature by mapping educational attainment and inequality in 102 regions in western Europe, using data extracted from the European Community Household Panel (ECHP) covering more than 100,000 individuals over the period 1995-2000. The results of this Exploratory Spatial Data Analysis (ESDA) reveal a strong correlation between levels of educational attainment and inequality across regions in Europe. Regions with similar educational conditions tend to cluster, often within national borders. In addition a North-South and an urban-rural dimension is evident. Northern regions and large European metropoli have not only the most educated labour force, but also the lowest levels of inequality. Educational inequality seems to be, in any case, a fundamentally within region phenomenon. 90 percent of the educational inequality in Europe takes place among individuals living in the same region.

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Paper provided by Instituto Madrileño de Estudios Avanzados (IMDEA) Ciencias Sociales in its series Working Papers with number 2007-18.

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Date of creation: 24 Sep 2007
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Publication status: Published in European Urban and Regional 18(4), October 2011: 358-374.
Handle: RePEc:imd:wpaper:wp2007-18
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