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An empirical analysis of the decision to train apprentices

  • Samuel Muehlemann


    (Institute of Economics, University of Berne)

  • Stefan C. Wolter


    (Institute of Economics, University of Berne)

  • Jürg Schweri


    (EHB Schweiz)

  • Rainer Winkelmann


It is a widely held belief that apprenticeship training represents a net investment for training firms, the cost of which needs to be recouped after the training period. A new firm-level dataset for Switzerland reveals large variation in net costs across firms and, remarkably, negative net costs for 60 percent of all firms. We use these data to estimate the effect of net costs on the number of apprentices hired by a firm. The results show that the costs have a significant impact on the training decision but no significant influence on the number of apprentices, once the firm has decided to train. For policy purposes, these results indicate that subsidies for firms that already train apprentices would not boost the number of available training places.

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Paper provided by University of Zurich, Institute for Strategy and Business Economics (ISU) in its series Economics of Education Working Paper Series with number 0005.

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Length: 25
Date of creation: Jan 2007
Date of revision:
Handle: RePEc:iso:educat:0005
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  1. Rainer Winkelmann, 2002. "Health Care Reform and the Number of Doctor Visits – An Econometric Analysis," SOI - Working Papers 0210, Socioeconomic Institute - University of Zurich.
  2. Acemoglu, Daron & Pischke, Jorn-Steffen, 1999. "Beyond Becker: Training in Imperfect Labour Markets," Economic Journal, Royal Economic Society, vol. 109(453), pages F112-42, February.
  3. Wolter, Stefan C. & Ryan, Paul, 2011. "Apprenticeship," Handbook of the Economics of Education, Elsevier.
  4. Daron Acemoglu & Jörn-Steffen Pischke, 1998. "Why Do Firms Train? Theory And Evidence," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, MIT Press, vol. 113(1), pages 78-118, February.
  5. Niederalt, Michael & Schnabel, Claus & Kaiser, Christian, 2001. "Betriebliches Ausbildungsverhalten zwischen Kosten-Nutzen-Kalkül und gesellschaftlicher Verantwortung: Einflussfaktoren der Ausbildungsintensität von deutschen Betrieben," Discussion Papers 7, Friedrich-Alexander-University Erlangen-Nuremberg, Chair of Labour and Regional Economics.
  6. Acemoglu, D. & Pischke, J.S., 1997. "The Structure of Wages and Investment in General Training," Working papers 97-24, Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT), Department of Economics.
  7. Sumon Majumdar, 2006. "Market Conditions and Worker Training: How Does it Affect and Whom?," Working Papers 1100, Queen's University, Department of Economics.
  8. Harhoff, Dietmar & Kane, Thomas J, 1996. "Is the German Apprenticeship System a Panacea for the US Labour Market?," CEPR Discussion Papers 1311, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
  9. Jan Erik Askilden & Oivind Anti Nilsen, 2005. "Apprentices And Young Workers: A Study Of The Norwegian Youth Labour Market," Scottish Journal of Political Economy, Scottish Economic Society, vol. 52(1), pages 1-17, 02.
  10. Mullahy, John, 1986. "Specification and testing of some modified count data models," Journal of Econometrics, Elsevier, vol. 33(3), pages 341-365, December.
  11. Vuong, Quang H, 1989. "Likelihood Ratio Tests for Model Selection and Non-nested Hypotheses," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 57(2), pages 307-33, March.
  12. Stefan C. Wolter & Samuel Mühlemann & Jürg Schweri, 2006. "Why Some Firms Train Apprentices and Many Others Do Not," German Economic Review, Verein für Socialpolitik, vol. 7, pages 249-264, 08.
  13. Klaus Stöger & Rudolf Winter-Ebmer, 2001. "Lehrlingsausbildung in Österreich: Welche Betriebe bilden Lehrlinge aus?," Economics working papers 2001-10, Department of Economics, Johannes Kepler University Linz, Austria.
  14. Pagan, Adrian & Vella, Frank, 1989. "Diagnostic Tests for Models Based on Individual Data: A Survey," Journal of Applied Econometrics, John Wiley & Sons, Ltd., vol. 4(S), pages S29-59, Supplemen.
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