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The Selection of Skills into Sectors: Evidence from the Market for Economists

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  • Boehm, Michael J.
  • Watzinger, Martin

Abstract

We study the selection of skills into sectors in an environment with (1) exogenous variation in the attractiveness of sectors and (2) good measurability of skills. More concretely, we examine how the selection into leading economics PhD programs varies with the business cycle and we measure PhD’s skills by their publication success. Our results strongly support a selection story: cohorts applying fora PhD- and graduating from a PhD during recession achieve a substantially better publication record if they stay in academia after graduating.

Suggested Citation

  • Boehm, Michael J. & Watzinger, Martin, 2010. "The Selection of Skills into Sectors: Evidence from the Market for Economists," MPRA Paper 23315, University Library of Munich, Germany.
  • Handle: RePEc:pra:mprapa:23315
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    References listed on IDEAS

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    1. Philip Oreopoulos & Till von Wachter & Andrew Heisz, 2006. "The Short- and Long-Term Career Effects of Graduating in a Recession: Hysteresis and Heterogeneity in the Market for College Graduates," NBER Working Papers 12159, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    2. Richard Freeman & John Van Reenen, 2009. "What if Congress Doubled R&D Spending on the Physical Sciences?," NBER Chapters,in: Innovation Policy and the Economy, Volume 9, pages 1-38 National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    3. Goolsbee, Austan, 1998. "Does Government R&D Policy Mainly Benefit Scientists and Engineers?," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 88(2), pages 298-302, May.
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    5. Pantelis Kalaitzidakis & Theofanis P. Mamuneas & Thanasis Stengos, 2003. "Rankings of Academic Journals and Institutions in Economics," Journal of the European Economic Association, MIT Press, vol. 1(6), pages 1346-1366, December.
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    10. Glenn Ellison, 2002. "Evolving Standards for Academic Publishing: A q-r Theory," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 110(5), pages 994-1034, October.
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    12. A. D. Roy, 1951. "Some Thoughts On The Distribution Of Earnings," Oxford Economic Papers, Oxford University Press, vol. 3(2), pages 135-146.
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    More about this item

    Keywords

    Sectoral Selection; Skill Composition; Business Cycle; Careers;

    JEL classification:

    • I29 - Health, Education, and Welfare - - Education - - - Other
    • J44 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Particular Labor Markets - - - Professional Labor Markets and Occupations
    • J24 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Demand and Supply of Labor - - - Human Capital; Skills; Occupational Choice; Labor Productivity

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