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Schooling in Developing Countries: The Roles of Supply, Demand and Government Policy

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  • Orazem, Peter
  • King, Elizabeth M.

Abstract

In developing countries, rising incomes, increased demand for more skilled labor, and government investments of considerable resources on building and equipping schools and paying teachers have contributed to global convergence in enrollment rates and completed years of schooling. Nevertheless, in many countries substantial education gaps persist between rich and poor, between rural and urban households and between males and females. To address these gaps, some governments have introduced school vouchers or cash transfers programs that are targeted to disadvantaged children. Others have initiated programs to attract or retain students by expanding school access or by setting higher teacher eligibility requirements or increasing the number of textbooks per student. While enrollments have increased, there has not been a commensurate improvement in knowledge and skills of students. Establishing the impact of these policies and programs requires an understanding of the incentives and constraints faced by all parties involved, the school providers, the parents and the children. The chapter reviews the economic literature on the determinants of schooling outcomes and schooling gaps with a focus on static and dynamic household responses to specific policy initiatives, perceived economic returns and other incentives. It discusses measurement and estimation issues involved with empirically testing these models and reviews findings. Governments have increasingly adopted the practice of experimentation and evaluation before taking steps to expand new policies. Often pilot programs are initiated in settings that are atypically appropriate for the program, so that the results overstate the likely impact of expanding the program to other settings. Program expansion can also result in general equilibrium feedback effects that do not apply to isolated pilots. These behavioral models provide a useful context within which to frame the likely outcomes of such expansion.

Suggested Citation

  • Orazem, Peter & King, Elizabeth M., 2008. "Schooling in Developing Countries: The Roles of Supply, Demand and Government Policy," Staff General Research Papers Archive 12838, Iowa State University, Department of Economics.
  • Handle: RePEc:isu:genres:12838
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    References listed on IDEAS

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    Cited by:

    1. Emran, M. Shahe & Shilpi, Forhad, 2015. "Gender, Geography, and Generations: Intergenerational Educational Mobility in Post-Reform India," World Development, Elsevier, vol. 72(C), pages 362-380.
    2. Pierre André & Jean-Luc Demonsant, 2012. "Koranic Schools in Senegal : A real barrier to formal education?," THEMA Working Papers 2012-46, THEMA (THéorie Economique, Modélisation et Applications), Université de Cergy-Pontoise.
    3. Lucia Mangiavacchi & Paolo Verme, 2013. "Minimum income in a transition economy," The Economics of Transition, The European Bank for Reconstruction and Development, vol. 21(4), pages 683-712, October.
    4. Mani, Subha & Hoddinott, John & Strauss, John, 2012. "Long-term impact of investments in early schooling — Empirical evidence from rural Ethiopia," Journal of Development Economics, Elsevier, vol. 99(2), pages 292-299.
    5. Behrman, Jere R., 2010. "Investment in Education Inputs and Incentives," Handbook of Development Economics, Elsevier.
    6. Jann Lay, 2010. "MDG Achievements, Determinants, and Resource Needs: What Has Been Learnt?," GIGA Working Paper Series 137, GIGA German Institute of Global and Area Studies.
    7. Orazem, Peter & Glewwe, Paul & Patrinos, Harry, 2007. "The Benefits and Costs of Alternative Strategies to Improve Educational Outcomes," Staff General Research Papers Archive 12853, Iowa State University, Department of Economics.
    8. Takasaki, Yoshito, 2017. "Do Natural Disasters Decrease the Gender Gap in Schooling?," World Development, Elsevier, vol. 94(C), pages 75-89.
    9. Okuneye Babatunde A & Obasan Kehinde A, 2014. "Determinants of Demand for Primary Education in Nigeria," International Journal of Economics and Empirical Research (IJEER), The Economics and Social Development Organization (TESDO), vol. 2(2), pages 44-51, February.
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    17. Bustelo, Monserrat & Arends-Kuenning, Mary P. & Lucchetti, Leonardo, 2012. "Persistent Impact of Natural Disasters on Child Nutrition and Schooling: Evidence from the 1999 Colombian Earthquake," IZA Discussion Papers 6354, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).
    18. Subha Mani & John Hoddinott & John Strauss, 2009. "Determinants of Schooling Outcomes: Empirical Evidence from Rural Ethiopia," Fordham Economics Discussion Paper Series dp2009-03, Fordham University, Department of Economics.
    19. Elizabeth M. King & Claudio E. Montenegro & Peter F. Orazem, 2012. "Economic Freedom, Human Rights, and the Returns to Human Capital: An Evaluation of the Schultz Hypothesis," Economic Development and Cultural Change, University of Chicago Press, vol. 61(1), pages 39-72.
    20. Subha Mani & John Hoddinott & John Strauss, 2009. "Long-Term Impact of Investments in Early Schooling – Empirical Evidence from Rural Ethiopia," Fordham Economics Discussion Paper Series dp2009-09, Fordham University, Department of Economics.
    21. Kanbur, Ravi, 2009. "Intergenerationalities: Some Educational Questions on Quality, Quantity and Opportunity," Working Papers 48922, Cornell University, Department of Applied Economics and Management.

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    JEL classification:

    • O15 - Economic Development, Innovation, Technological Change, and Growth - - Economic Development - - - Economic Development: Human Resources; Human Development; Income Distribution; Migration

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