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Constitutional Rights and Education: An International Comparative Study

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  • Sebastian Edwards
  • Alvaro Garcia-Marin

Abstract

We investigate whether the inclusion of educational rights in political constitutions affects the quality of education. We rely on data for 61 countries that participated in the 2012 PISA tests. Our results are strong and robust to the estimation technique (least squares or instrumental variables): there is no evidence that including the right to education in the constitution has been associated with higher test scores. The quality of education depends on socioeconomic, structural, and policy variables, such as expenditure per student, the teacher- pupil ratio, and families' background. These results are important for emerging countries that are discussing the adoption of new constitutions, such as Thailand and Chile.

Suggested Citation

  • Sebastian Edwards & Alvaro Garcia-Marin, 2015. "Constitutional Rights and Education: An International Comparative Study," Working Papers wp406, University of Chile, Department of Economics.
  • Handle: RePEc:udc:wpaper:wp406
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    File URL: http://www.econ.uchile.cl/uploads/publicacion/b3378ba1c788e8f10a755767ee7f089a02bd0113.pdf
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    References listed on IDEAS

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    1. Andrei Shleifer & Florencio Lopez-de-Silanes & Rafael La Porta, 2008. "The Economic Consequences of Legal Origins," Journal of Economic Literature, American Economic Association, vol. 46(2), pages 285-332, June.
    2. Hanushek, Eric A. & Woessmann, Ludger, 2011. "The Economics of International Differences in Educational Achievement," Handbook of the Economics of Education, Elsevier.
    3. Yingyi Qian & Barry R. Weingast, 1997. "Federalism as a Commitment to Reserving Market Incentives," Journal of Economic Perspectives, American Economic Association, vol. 11(4), pages 83-92, Fall.
    4. Tom, Ginsburg, 2014. "¿Fruto de la parra envenenada? Algunas observaciones comparadas sobre la Constitución Chilena," Estudios Públicos, Centro de Estudios Públicos, vol. 0(133), pages 1-36.
    5. Rafael La Porta & Florencio Lopez-de-Silanes & Andrei Shleifer & Robert W. Vishny, 1998. "Law and Finance," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 106(6), pages 1113-1155, December.
    6. North, Douglass C. & Weingast, Barry R., 1989. "Constitutions and Commitment: The Evolution of Institutions Governing Public Choice in Seventeenth-Century England," The Journal of Economic History, Cambridge University Press, vol. 49(04), pages 803-832, December.
    7. Torsten Persson & Guido Tabellini, 2005. "The Economic Effects of Constitutions," MIT Press Books, The MIT Press, edition 1, volume 1, number 0262661926, January.
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    Cited by:

    1. repec:eee:jcecon:v:45:y:2017:i:3:p:563-581 is not listed on IDEAS
    2. Ludger Woessmann, 2016. "The Importance of School Systems: Evidence from International Differences in Student Achievement," Journal of Economic Perspectives, American Economic Association, vol. 30(3), pages 3-32, Summer.
    3. Joshua C. Gellers & Christopher Jeffords, 2015. "Procedural Environmental Rights and Environmental Justice: Assessing the Impact of Environmental Constitutionalism," Economic Rights Working Papers 25, University of Connecticut, Human Rights Institute.
    4. Christopher Jeffords, 2015. "A Panel Data Analysis of the Effects of Constitutional Environmental Rights Provisions on Access to Improved Sanitation Facilities and Water Sources," Economic Rights Working Papers 24, University of Connecticut, Human Rights Institute.
    5. Cordero, José Manuel & Cristobal, Victor & Santín, Daniel, 2017. "Causal Inference on Education Policies: A Survey of Empirical Studies Using PISA, TIMSS and PIRLS," MPRA Paper 76295, University Library of Munich, Germany.
    6. Agasisti, Tommaso & Gil-Izquierdo, María & Han, Seong Won, 2017. "ICT use at home for school-related tasks: what is the effect on a student’s achievement? Empirical evidence from OECD PISA data," MPRA Paper 81343, University Library of Munich, Germany.
    7. Kodila-Tedika, Oasis & Mulunda Kabange, Martin, 2018. "Constitutional instability and Poverty: Some Empirical Evidence," MPRA Paper 84501, University Library of Munich, Germany.
    8. Hiroaki Matsuura, 2016. "Constitutional social and environmental human rights and child health outcomes in Latin American countries," WIDER Working Paper Series 168, World Institute for Development Economic Research (UNU-WIDER).

    More about this item

    JEL classification:

    • I25 - Health, Education, and Welfare - - Education - - - Education and Economic Development
    • I20 - Health, Education, and Welfare - - Education - - - General
    • I28 - Health, Education, and Welfare - - Education - - - Government Policy

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