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Which skills protect graduates against a alack labour market?

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  • Humburg, M.

    (Research Centre for Educ and Labour Mark)

  • de Grip, A.

    (Research Centre for Educ and Labour Mark)

  • van der Velden, R.K.W.

    (Research Centre for Educ and Labour Mark)

Abstract

This paper explores the relationship between graduates’ skill levels and the risk ofovereducation and unemployment in 17 European countries. We distinguish betweenfield-specific and general skills and between two labour market segments, theoccupational domain of a particular field of study and the labour market segmentwhich requires general skills. In line with the predictions of the crowding out hypothesis,we find that the level of protection afforded by field-specific skills against the risk ofovereducation increases with the degree of excess labour supply in the occupationaldomain of the graduate’s field of study. Conversely, general skills offer more protectionagainst the risk of overeducation when excess labour supply in the labour marketsegment which requires general skills is higher. Field-specific skills also protect graduatesagainst the risk of unemployment, whereas graduates’ level of general skills appears tobe unrelated to the risk of becoming unemployed.
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Suggested Citation

  • Humburg, M. & de Grip, A. & van der Velden, R.K.W., 2012. "Which skills protect graduates against a alack labour market?," Research Memorandum 002, Maastricht University, Maastricht Research School of Economics of Technology and Organization (METEOR).
  • Handle: RePEc:unm:umamet:2012002
    DOI: 10.26481/umamet.2012002
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    Cited by:

    1. Berge, Wiljan van den, 2018. "Bad start, bad match? The early career effects of graduating in a recession for vocational and academic graduates," Labour Economics, Elsevier, vol. 53(C), pages 75-96.
    2. Dieter Verhaest & Stijn Baert, 2018. "The effects of workplace learning in higher education on employment and match quality: is there an early-career trade-off?," Empirical Economics, Springer, vol. 55(3), pages 1229-1270, November.
    3. Verhaest, Dieter & Baert, Stijn, 2015. "The Early Labour Market Effects of Generally and Vocationally Oriented Higher Education: Is There a Trade-off?," IZA Discussion Papers 9137, Institute of Labor Economics (IZA).
    4. Hendrik van Broekhuizen, 2016. "Graduate unemployment and Higher Education Institutions in South Africa," Working Papers 08/2016, Stellenbosch University, Department of Economics.
    5. Natalia Shmatko, 2012. "Competences of Engineers. Evidence from a Comparative Study for Russia and EU Countries," Foresight and STI Governance (Foresight-Russia till No. 3/2015), National Research University Higher School of Economics, vol. 6(4), pages 32-47.
    6. Davia, Maria A. & McGuinness, Seamus & O'Connell, Philip J., 2016. "Determinants of Regional Differences in Rates of Overeducation in Europe," IZA Discussion Papers 10250, Institute of Labor Economics (IZA).
    7. Natalia Shmatko, 2013. "Graduates’ Competencies For The Innovation Labour Market," HSE Working papers WP BRP 13/STI/2013, National Research University Higher School of Economics.
    8. Zwysen, Wouter, 2014. "A disadvantaged childhood matters more if local unemployment is high," ISER Working Paper Series 2014-43, Institute for Social and Economic Research.

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