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Demand for Skills, Supply of Skills and Returns to Schooling in Cambodia

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  • Chris SAKELLARIOU

    (Division of Economics, Nanyang Technological University, Singapore)

Abstract

In this paper I take a detailed look into the returns to schooling in Cambodia using the 1997 and 2003-04 Socioeconomic Surveys of Households and alternative estimation techniques (OLS vs. Family Fixed Effects and Instrumental Variables). The main focus of the analysis has to do with differences by sector (public vs. private). In Cambodia, the average educational attainment of workers in the public sector is significantly higher compared to the private sector. Without considering issues of selection into the public vs. the private sector, the wage premium for one additional year of schooling in the private sector is about twice that in the public sector for both men and women. Furthermore, the average return to one additional year of potential labor market experience is higher in the private sector. This raises questions about the reasons for the self-selection of more educated workers in the public sector in Cambodia. The picture changes drastically, especially in the case of female employment, once the assumption that the location of individuals in the public and private sectors is the outcome of a random process. However, after correcting for selection bias using Heckman's correction, one additional year of schooling still increases earnings by more in the private sector for men, but the spread between sectors narrows. However for women, one additional year of schooling increases earnings in the public sector by more than in the private sector. Furthermore, now the return to one additional year of potential labor market experience is significantly higher in the public sector, for both men and women. Other findings indicate that the supply of more educated workers has outstripped demand, resulting in a decline in the return to tertiary education and a stable return to secondary education. The dynamics of the demand and supply of skills and their changes over the time suggest that the supply of post-primary skills is adequate, except perhaps in the private sector.

Suggested Citation

  • Chris SAKELLARIOU, 2008. "Demand for Skills, Supply of Skills and Returns to Schooling in Cambodia," Economic Growth Centre Working Paper Series 0805, Nanyang Technological University, School of Social Sciences, Economic Growth Centre.
  • Handle: RePEc:nan:wpaper:0805
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    References listed on IDEAS

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