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Einkommensdifferenziale zwischen Bachelor- und Diplomabsolventen - Humankapital oder Signal?

Author

Listed:
  • Verena Dill
  • Anke Hammen

Abstract

Descriptive statistics show that a wage differential between graduates of the newly introduced bachelor programme and those of the traditional so called diplom programme of 7200 EUR per anno exists (Briedis/Minks 2005b). How can we explain this gap? Economic theory offers two contrary theories: human capital and signalling. Both theories claim a positive correlation of education and earnings. However, the theo- ries differ concerning the causal effect of this relationship. In order to determine which theory better explains the observed wage gap, we use the so-called Bologna-Reform (the process of restructuring from diplom- to bachelor-graduates) as a quasi- experimental setting. Our study shows that signalling effects are dominant when ex- amining tertiary education in Germany.

Suggested Citation

  • Verena Dill & Anke Hammen, 2011. "Einkommensdifferenziale zwischen Bachelor- und Diplomabsolventen - Humankapital oder Signal?," Research Papers in Economics 2011-04, University of Trier, Department of Economics.
  • Handle: RePEc:trr:wpaper:201104
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    File URL: http://www.uni-trier.de/fileadmin/fb4/prof/VWL/EWF/Research_Papers/2011-04.pdf
    File Function: First version, 2011
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    References listed on IDEAS

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    1. Juerg Schweri, 2004. "Does it pay to be a good student? Results from the Swiss graduate labour market," Diskussionsschriften dp0405, Universitaet Bern, Departement Volkswirtschaft.
    2. Arnaud Chevalier & Colm Harmon & Ian Walker & Yu Zhu, 2004. "Does Education Raise Productivity, or Just Reflect it?," Economic Journal, Royal Economic Society, vol. 114(499), pages 499-517, November.
    3. Ulla Hämäläinen & Roope Uusitalo, 2008. "Signalling or Human Capital: Evidence from the Finnish Polytechnic School Reform," Scandinavian Journal of Economics, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 110(4), pages 755-775, December.
    4. Wolpin, Kenneth I, 1977. "Education and Screening," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 67(5), pages 949-958, December.
    5. Stiglitz, Joseph E, 1975. "The Theory of "Screening," Education, and the Distribution of Income," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 65(3), pages 283-300, June.
    6. Riley, John G, 1979. "Testing the Educational Screening Hypothesis," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 87(5), pages 227-252, October.
    7. Garibaldi, Pietro, 2006. "Personnel Economics in Imperfect Labour Markets," OUP Catalogue, Oxford University Press, number 9780199280674.
    Full references (including those not matched with items on IDEAS)

    More about this item

    Keywords

    Signalling; human capital; German tertiary education; Bologna-Process;

    JEL classification:

    • I21 - Health, Education, and Welfare - - Education - - - Analysis of Education
    • J31 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Wages, Compensation, and Labor Costs - - - Wage Level and Structure; Wage Differentials

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