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Education, Health and Wages

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  • James J. Heckman
  • John Eric Humphries
  • Greg Veramendi
  • Sergio S. Urzua

Abstract

This paper develops and estimates a model with multiple schooling choices that identifies the causal effect of different levels of schooling on health, health-related behaviors, and labor market outcomes. We develop an approach that is a halfway house between a reduced form treatment effect model and a fully formulated dynamic discrete choice model. It is computationally tractable and identifies the causal effects of educational choices at different margins. We estimate distributions of responses to education and find evidence for substantial heterogeneity in unobserved variables on which agents make choices. The estimated treatment effects of education are decomposed into the direct benefits of attaining a given level of schooling and indirect benefits from the option to continue on to further schooling. Continuation values are an important component of our estimated treatment effects. While the estimated causal effects of education are substantial for most outcomes, we also estimate a quantitatively important effect of unobservables on outcomes. Both cognitive and socioemotional factors contribute to shaping educational choices and labor market and health outcomes. We improve on LATE by identifying the groups affected by variations in the instruments. We find benefits of cognition on most outcomes apart from its effect on schooling attainment. The benefits of socioemotional skills on outcomes beyond their effects on schooling attainment are less precisely estimated.

Suggested Citation

  • James J. Heckman & John Eric Humphries & Greg Veramendi & Sergio S. Urzua, 2014. "Education, Health and Wages," NBER Working Papers 19971, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  • Handle: RePEc:nbr:nberwo:19971
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    3. Peter Hoeschler & Uschi Backes-Gellner, 2014. "Shooting for the Stars and Failing: College Dropout and Self-Esteem," Economics of Education Working Paper Series 0100, University of Zurich, Department of Business Administration (IBW), revised Feb 2019.
    4. Peter A. Savelyev, 2014. "Psychological Skills, Education, and Longevity of High-Ability Individuals," Vanderbilt University Department of Economics Working Papers 14-00007, Vanderbilt University Department of Economics.
    5. Elena del Rey & Sergi Jiménez-Martín & Judit Vall-Castello, 2015. "The Effect of Changes in the Statutory Minimum Working Age on Educational, Labor And Health Outcomes," Working Papers 834, Barcelona School of Economics.
    6. Belskaya, Olga & Peter, Klara Sabirianova & Posso, Christian, 2014. "College Expansion and the Marginal Returns to Education: Evidence from Russia," IZA Discussion Papers 8735, Institute of Labor Economics (IZA).
    7. Xavier Ramos Morilla & Luciana Méndez Errico, 2019. "Selection and educational attainment: Why some children are left behind? Evidence from a middle-income country," Working Papers wpdea1901, Department of Applied Economics at Universitat Autonoma of Barcelona.
    8. Bijwaard, Govert E. & van Kippersluis, Hans & Veenman, Justus, 2015. "Education and health: The role of cognitive ability," Journal of Health Economics, Elsevier, vol. 42(C), pages 29-43.
    9. Basu, Anirban & Jones, Andrew M. & Dias, Pedro Rosa, 2018. "Heterogeneity in the impact of type of schooling on adult health and lifestyle," Journal of Health Economics, Elsevier, vol. 57(C), pages 1-14.
    10. Johannes S. Kunz & Kevin E. Staub, 2016. "Subjective completion beliefs and the demand for post-secondary education," Economics of Education Working Paper Series 0120, University of Zurich, Department of Business Administration (IBW).
    11. Eckhardt Bode & Lucia Perez Villar, 2017. "Creativity, education or what? On the measurement of regional human capital," Papers in Regional Science, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 96, pages 51-67, March.
    12. Sergio Urzua, 2019. "Redistribution Through Education: The Value of Public Education Spending," Commitment to Equity (CEQ) Working Paper Series 88, Tulane University, Department of Economics.
    13. Niccodemi, Gianmaria & Bijwaard, Govert, 2018. "Education, Intelligence and Diseases in Old Age," IZA Discussion Papers 11605, Institute of Labor Economics (IZA).
    14. Peter Zweifel, 2022. "Health economics explained through six questions and answers," Economic Affairs, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 42(1), pages 50-69, February.
    15. María F. Prada & Sergio S. Urzúa, 2014. "One Size does not Fit All: Multiple Dimensions of Ability, College Attendance and Wages," NBER Working Papers 20752, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    16. Del Rey, Elena & Jimenez-Martin, Sergi & Vall Castello, Judit, 2018. "Improving educational and labor outcomes through child labor regulation," Economics of Education Review, Elsevier, vol. 66(C), pages 51-66.
    17. Govert e. Bijwaard & Hans Van Kippersluis, 2016. "Efficiency of Health Investment: Education or Intelligence?," Health Economics, John Wiley & Sons, Ltd., vol. 25(9), pages 1056-1072, September.
    18. Humphries, John Eric & Kosse, Fabian, 2017. "On the interpretation of non-cognitive skills – What is being measured and why it matters," Journal of Economic Behavior & Organization, Elsevier, vol. 136(C), pages 174-185.
    19. Shixi Kang & Jingwen Tan, 2021. "Can Education Motivate Individual Health Demands? Dynamic Pseudo-panel Evidence from China's Immigration," Papers 2112.01046, arXiv.org.
    20. Jabłoński Marek, 2019. "Interdependence Among Creativity, Education, and Job Experience: A Municipal Company in Poland," Journal of Management and Business Administration. Central Europe, Sciendo, vol. 27(4), pages 48-70, December.
    21. Rémi Piatek & Pia Pinger, 2016. "Maintaining (Locus of) Control? Data Combination for the Identification and Inference of Factor Structure Models," Journal of Applied Econometrics, John Wiley & Sons, Ltd., vol. 31(4), pages 734-755, June.
    22. Anirban Basu & Andrew M. Jones & Pedro Rosa Dias, 2014. "The Roles of Cognitive and Non-Cognitive Skills in Moderating the Effects of Mixed-Ability Schools on Long-Term Health," NBER Working Papers 20811, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.

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    More about this item

    JEL classification:

    • C32 - Mathematical and Quantitative Methods - - Multiple or Simultaneous Equation Models; Multiple Variables - - - Time-Series Models; Dynamic Quantile Regressions; Dynamic Treatment Effect Models; Diffusion Processes; State Space Models
    • C38 - Mathematical and Quantitative Methods - - Multiple or Simultaneous Equation Models; Multiple Variables - - - Classification Methdos; Cluster Analysis; Principal Components; Factor Analysis
    • I12 - Health, Education, and Welfare - - Health - - - Health Behavior
    • I14 - Health, Education, and Welfare - - Health - - - Health and Inequality
    • I21 - Health, Education, and Welfare - - Education - - - Analysis of Education

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