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Conscription and the returns to education: Evidence from a regression discontinuity

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  • mouganie, pierre

Abstract

In 1997, the French government put into effect a law that permanently exempted young French male citizens born after Jan 1, 1979 from mandatory military service while still requiring those born before that cutoff date to serve. This paper uses a regression discontinuity design to identify the effect of peacetime conscription on education and labor market outcomes. Results indicate that conscription eligibility induces a significant increase in years of education, which is consistent with conscription avoidance behavior. However, this increased education does not result in either an increase in graduation rates, or in employment and wages. Additional evidence shows conscription has no direct effect on earnings, suggesting that the returns to education induced by this policy was zero.

Suggested Citation

  • mouganie, pierre, 2014. "Conscription and the returns to education: Evidence from a regression discontinuity," MPRA Paper 62508, University Library of Munich, Germany, revised 10 Jan 2015.
  • Handle: RePEc:pra:mprapa:62508
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    Cited by:

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    2. Fize, Etienne & Louis-Sidois, Charles, 2020. "Military service and political behavior: Evidence from France," European Economic Review, Elsevier, vol. 122(C).
    3. Patrick A. Puhani & Margret K. Sterrenberg, 2022. "Effects of mandatory military and alternative community service on wages and other socioeconomic outcomes," Kyklos, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 75(3), pages 488-507, August.
    4. Elena Kotyrlo & Elena Varshavskaya, 2022. "Impact of the compulsory military service reform of 2007–2008 on the demand for higher education," Economics of Transition and Institutional Change, John Wiley & Sons, vol. 30(4), pages 715-735, October.

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    More about this item

    Keywords

    Regression Discontinuity Design; Returns to Education; France; Conscription; Signaling;
    All these keywords.

    JEL classification:

    • I20 - Health, Education, and Welfare - - Education - - - General
    • I26 - Health, Education, and Welfare - - Education - - - Returns to Education
    • J24 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Demand and Supply of Labor - - - Human Capital; Skills; Occupational Choice; Labor Productivity
    • J30 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Wages, Compensation, and Labor Costs - - - General

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