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Higher education academic salaries in the UK

  • James Walker


    (Department of Management, University of Reading)

  • Anna Vignoles


  • Mark Collins

It is widely believed that higher education academic salaries are too low, and that this may lead to a 'brain drain' and also lower quality in higher education, as universities fail to attract the 'brightest and the best'. We compare the salaries of higher education teaching professionals in the UK with those of other comparable professionals. We compare academic salaries to a range of occupational groupings that one might view as similar, in terms of unobserved characteristics, to academics. We conclude that HE teaching professionals earn lower earnings than most public sector graduates and do particularly poorly compared to most other comparable professionals. In particular, academic earnings compare poorly to those in the legal professions, consultant physicians and dental practitioners (across both the public and private sectors). On the other hand, some public sector workers do worse than HE academics, e.g. FE teachers. Copyright 2010 , Oxford University Press.

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Paper provided by Henley Business School, Reading University in its series Economics & Management Discussion Papers with number em-dp2006-37.

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Handle: RePEc:rdg:emxxdp:em-dp2006-37
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  1. Ronald Oaxaca, 1971. "Male-Female Wage Differentials in Urban Labor Markets," Working Papers 396, Princeton University, Department of Economics, Industrial Relations Section..
  2. Arnaud Chevalier & Peter Dolton & Steven Mcintosh, 2007. "Recruiting and Retaining Teachers in the UK: An Analysis of Graduate Occupation Choice from the 1960s to the 1990s," Economica, London School of Economics and Political Science, vol. 74(293), pages 69-96, 02.
  3. Jacob A. Mincer, 1974. "Introduction to "Schooling, Experience, and Earnings"," NBER Chapters, in: Schooling, Experience, and Earnings, pages 1-4 National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  4. Alan S. Blinder, 1973. "Wage Discrimination: Reduced Form and Structural Estimates," Journal of Human Resources, University of Wisconsin Press, vol. 8(4), pages 436-455.
  5. Blackaby, David & Booth, Alison L & Frank, Jeff, 2002. "Outside Offers and the Gender Pay Gap: Empirical Evidence from the UK," CEPR Discussion Papers 3549, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
  6. Boyle Glenn, 2008. "Pay Peanuts and Get Monkeys? Evidence from Academia," The B.E. Journal of Economic Analysis & Policy, De Gruyter, vol. 8(1), pages 1-26, July.
  7. Booth, Alison & Jeff Frank & David Blackaby, 2003. "Outside Offers and the Gender Pay Gap: Empirical Evidence from the UK Academic Labour Market," Royal Economic Society Annual Conference 2003 28, Royal Economic Society.
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