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Long-Lasting Effects of Socialist Education

  • Paolo Masella

    (Mannheim University)

  • Nicola Fuchs-Schündeln

    (Goethe University Frankfurt /Main)

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    Political regimes influence the contents of teaching and the criteria used to select and evaluate students. We study the impact of a socialist education on the likelihood of obtaining a college degree, as well as on several labor market outcomes, by exploiting the reorganization of the school system in East Germany after reunification. Our identification strategy relies on the following consideration: within the same cohort of individuals from the East who were still in education at reunification, the ones born earlier in the year started school at a younger age and had thus received one more year of socialist education at reunification. We find that an additional year of socialist education substantially decreases the probability of obtaining a college degree. We also provide evidence that, among male respondents, (i) the abolishment of non meritocratic restrictions to access to college allowed students to invest more in their human capital and therefore achieve a better occupational status (ii) the elimination of any part of the curricula directed towards the transmission of socialist values encouraged participation in the labor market and effort in the workplace.

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    Paper provided by Society for Economic Dynamics in its series 2012 Meeting Papers with number 1194.

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    Date of creation: 2012
    Date of revision:
    Handle: RePEc:red:sed012:1194
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    Society for Economic Dynamics Marina Azzimonti Department of Economics Stonybrook University 10 Nicolls Road Stonybrook NY 11790 USA

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    1. Daron Acemoglu & Simon Johnson & James A. Robinson & Pierre Yared, 2005. "From Education to Democracy?," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 95(2), pages 44-49, May.
    2. Kelly Bedard & Elizabeth Dhuey, 2006. "The Persistence of Early Childhood Maturity: International Evidence of Long-Run Age Effects," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, Oxford University Press, vol. 121(4), pages 1437-1472.
    3. Edward Glaeser & Giacomo Ponzetto & Andrei Shleifer, 2007. "Why does democracy need education?," Journal of Economic Growth, Springer, vol. 12(2), pages 77-99, June.
    4. Yann Algan & Pierre Cahuc & Andrei Shleifer, 2011. "Teaching Practices and Social Capital," NBER Working Papers 17527, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    5. Patrick A. Puhani & Andrea M. Weber, 2006. "Does the Early Bird Catch the Worm? Instrumental Variable Estimates of Educational Effects of Age of School Entry in Germany," University of St. Gallen Department of Economics working paper series 2006 2006-02, Department of Economics, University of St. Gallen.
    6. Lance Lochner & Enrico Moretti, 2001. "The Effect of Education on Crime: Evidence from Prison Inmates, Arrests, and Self-Reports," NBER Working Papers 8605, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    7. repec:zbw:rwidps:0027 is not listed on IDEAS
    8. Adriana Lleras-Muney, 2005. "The Relationship Between Education and Adult Mortality in the United States," Review of Economic Studies, Oxford University Press, vol. 72(1), pages 189-221.
    9. Daron Acemoglu & Simon Johnson & James Robinson, 2004. "Institutions as the Fundamental Cause of Long-Run Growth," NBER Working Papers 10481, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    10. Glaeser, Edward Ludwig & Ponzetto, Giacomo A. M. & Shleifer, Andrei, 2007. "Why does democracy need education?," Scholarly Articles 27867132, Harvard University Department of Economics.
    11. Fertig, Michael & Kluve, Jochen, 2005. "The Effect of Age at School Entry on Educational Attainment in Germany," IZA Discussion Papers 1507, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).
    12. Fertig, Michael & Kluve, Jochen, 2005. "The Effect of Age at School Entry on Educational Attainment in Germany," RWI Discussion Papers 27, RWI - Leibniz-Institut für Wirtschaftsforschung.
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