To Be or Not to Be... a Scientist?
Policy makers generally advocate that to remain competitive countries need to train more scientists. Employers regularly complain of qualified scientist shortages blaming the higher wages in other occupations for luring graduates out of scientific occupations. Using a survey of recent British graduates from Higher Education we report that fewer than 50% of science graduates work in a scientific occupation three years after graduation. The wage premium observed for science graduates stems from occupational choice rather than a science degree. Accounting for selection into subject and occupation, the returns to working in a scientific occupation reaches 18% and there is no return to a science degree outside scientific occupations. Finally, scientists working in a scientific occupation are more satisfied with their educational and career choices, which suggests that those not working in these occupations have been pushed out of careers in science.
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- Arcidiacono, Peter, 2004.
"Ability sorting and the returns to college major,"
Journal of Econometrics,
Elsevier, vol. 121(1-2), pages 343-375.
- James D. Adams, 2009. "Is the U.S. Losing Its Preeminence in Higher Education?," NBER Working Papers 15233, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
- Keith A. Bender & John S. Heywood, 2006.
"Educational Mismatch Among Ph.D.s: Determinants and Consequences,"
NBER Working Papers
12693, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
- Keith A. Bender & John S. Heywood, 2009. "Educational Mismatch among Ph.D.s: Determinants and Consequences," NBER Chapters, in: Science and Engineering Careers in the United States: An Analysis of Markets and Employment, pages 229-255 National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
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