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Using Heteroscedasticity to Estimate the Returns to Education

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  • Vincent Hogan
  • Roberto Rigobon

Abstract

We apply a new estimator to the measurement of the economic returns to education. We control for endogenous education, unobserved ability and measurement error using only the natural heteroscedasticty of wages and education attainment. Our prefered estimate, 6.07%, is closer to the OLS estimate but smaller (and more precise) than the estimates typically reported by studies that use IV. Our results indicate that the biases generated by unobserved ability and measurement error tend to cancel each other out as suggested by Griliches (1977). We also present Monte Carlo evidence to show that the finite sample bias our estimator is small.

Suggested Citation

  • Vincent Hogan & Roberto Rigobon, 2002. "Using Heteroscedasticity to Estimate the Returns to Education," NBER Working Papers 9145, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  • Handle: RePEc:nbr:nberwo:9145
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    Cited by:

    1. Cavallo, Eduardo & Eichengreen, Barry & Panizza, Ugo, 2016. "Can Countries Rely on Foreign Saving for Investment and Economic Development?," CEPR Discussion Papers 11451, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
    2. Harmon, Colm & Hogan, Vincent & Walker, Ian, 2003. "Dispersion in the economic return to schooling," Labour Economics, Elsevier, vol. 10(2), pages 205-214, April.
    3. Courtemanche, Charles & Pinkston, Joshua C. & Stewart, Jay, 2021. "Time spent exercising and obesity: An application of Lewbel’s instrumental variables method," Economics & Human Biology, Elsevier, vol. 41(C).
    4. Alan Fernihough, 2017. "Human capital and the quantity–quality trade-off during the demographic transition," Journal of Economic Growth, Springer, vol. 22(1), pages 35-65, March.
    5. Daniel J. Henderson & Andrew Houtenville & Le Wang, 2017. "The Distribution of Returns to Education for People with Disabilities," Journal of Labor Research, Springer, vol. 38(3), pages 261-282, September.
    6. Yakovlev, Pavel & Leguizamon, Susane, 2012. "Ignorance is not bliss: On the role of education in subjective well-being," Journal of Behavioral and Experimental Economics (formerly The Journal of Socio-Economics), Elsevier, vol. 41(6), pages 806-815.
    7. Lídia Farré & Roger Klein & Francis Vella, 2013. "A parametric control function approach to estimating the returns to schooling in the absence of exclusion restrictions: an application to the NLSY," Empirical Economics, Springer, vol. 44(1), pages 111-133, February.
    8. International Monetary Fund, 2004. "Once Again, is Openness Good for Growth?," IMF Working Papers 2004/135, International Monetary Fund.
    9. Uwaifo, Ruth, 2006. "Africa's Education Enigma? The Nigerian story," 2006 Annual meeting, July 23-26, Long Beach, CA 21254, American Agricultural Economics Association (New Name 2008: Agricultural and Applied Economics Association).
    10. Rosso, Anna, 2019. "Emigrant selection and wages: The case of Poland," Labour Economics, Elsevier, vol. 60(C), pages 148-175.
    11. Eduardo Cavallo & Barry Eichengreen & Ugo Panizza, 2018. "Can countries rely on foreign saving for investment and economic development?," Review of World Economics (Weltwirtschaftliches Archiv), Springer;Institut für Weltwirtschaft (Kiel Institute for the World Economy), vol. 154(2), pages 277-306, May.
    12. John J. Hisnanick, 2003. "A Great Place to Start: The Role of Military Service on Human Capital Formation," LABOUR, CEIS, vol. 17(1), pages 25-45, March.
    13. Vani Borooah & John Mangan, 2008. "Education, occupational class, and unemployment in the regions of the United Kingdom," Education Economics, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 16(4), pages 351-370.
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    15. Kajuth, Florian, 2012. "Identifying the Phillips curve through shifts in volatility," Journal of Macroeconomics, Elsevier, vol. 34(4), pages 975-991.
    16. Lee, Ha Yan & Ricci, Luca Antonio & Rigobon, Roberto, 2004. "Once again, is openness good for growth?," Journal of Development Economics, Elsevier, vol. 75(2), pages 451-472, December.

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    JEL classification:

    • C30 - Mathematical and Quantitative Methods - - Multiple or Simultaneous Equation Models; Multiple Variables - - - General
    • I20 - Health, Education, and Welfare - - Education - - - General

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