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Efficient Supply of Human Capital: Role of College Major

Listed author(s):
  • Cho, Sungjin

    (Seoul National University)

  • Kam, Jihye

    (University of Wisconsin-Madison)

  • Lee, Soohyung

    ()

    (University of Maryland)

Registered author(s):

    This study examines the extent to which changing the composition of college majors among working-age population may affect the supply of human capital or effective labor supply. We use the South Korean setting, in which the population is rapidly aging, but where, despite their high educational attainment, women and young adults are still weakly attached to the labor market. We find that Engineering majors have an advantage in various outcomes such as likelihood of being in the labor force, being employed, obtaining long-term position, and earnings, while Humanities and Arts/Athletics majors show the worst outcomes. We then conduct a back-of-the-envelope calculation of the impact of the recently proposed policy change to increase the share of Engineering majors by 10 percent starting in 2017. Our calculation suggests that the policy change may have a positive but small impact on labor market outcomes.

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    File URL: http://ftp.iza.org/dp10610.pdf
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    Paper provided by Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA) in its series IZA Discussion Papers with number 10610.

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    Length: 44 pages
    Date of creation: Mar 2017
    Publication status: forthcoming in: Singapore Economic Review
    Handle: RePEc:iza:izadps:dp10610
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    1. Jacob A. Mincer, 1974. "Introduction to "Schooling, Experience, and Earnings"," NBER Chapters,in: Schooling, Experience, and Earnings, pages 1-4 National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    2. Neumark, David & Johnson, Hans & Mejia, Marisol Cuellar, 2013. "Future skill shortages in the U.S. economy?," Economics of Education Review, Elsevier, vol. 32(C), pages 151-167.
    3. Chang-Tai Hsieh & Peter J. Klenow, 2009. "Misallocation and Manufacturing TFP in China and India," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, Oxford University Press, vol. 124(4), pages 1403-1448.
    4. Jacob A. Mincer, 1974. "Schooling, Experience, and Earnings," NBER Books, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc, number minc74-1.
    5. David S. Lee, 2009. "Training, Wages, and Sample Selection: Estimating Sharp Bounds on Treatment Effects," Review of Economic Studies, Oxford University Press, vol. 76(3), pages 1071-1102.
    6. Hamermesh, Daniel S. & Donald, Stephen G., 2008. "The effect of college curriculum on earnings: An affinity identifier for non-ignorable non-response bias," Journal of Econometrics, Elsevier, vol. 144(2), pages 479-491, June.
    7. Sanghoon Lee, 2007. "The Timing Of Signaling: To Study In High School Or In College?," International Economic Review, Department of Economics, University of Pennsylvania and Osaka University Institute of Social and Economic Research Association, vol. 48(3), pages 785-807, 08.
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