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Human Capital and Growth: Specification Matters

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  • Sunde, Uwe

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  • Vischer, Thomas

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Abstract

This paper suggests that the weak empirical effect of human capital on growth in existing cross-country studies is partly the result of an inappropriate specification that does not account for the different channels through which human capital aspects growth. A systematic replication of earlier results from the literature shows that both, initial levels and changes in human capital, have positive growth effects, while in isolation, each channel often appears insignificant. Studies that do not account for both channels might underestimate the effect of human capital due to convergence in human capital, in particular when measuring human capital in log average years of schooling. This study therefore complements alternative explanations for the weak growth effects of human capital based on outlier observations and measurement issues.

Suggested Citation

  • Sunde, Uwe & Vischer, Thomas, 2011. "Human Capital and Growth: Specification Matters," Economics Working Paper Series 1131, University of St. Gallen, School of Economics and Political Science.
  • Handle: RePEc:usg:econwp:2011:31
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    References listed on IDEAS

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    Cited by:

    1. Lenkei, Balint & Mustafa, Ghulam & Vecchi, Michela, 2018. "Growth in emerging economies: Is there a role for education?," Economic Modelling, Elsevier, vol. 73(C), pages 240-253.
    2. Matteo Cervellati & Uwe Sunde & Klaus F. Zimmermann, 2017. "Demographic dynamics and long-run development: insights for the secular stagnation debate," Journal of Population Economics, Springer;European Society for Population Economics, vol. 30(2), pages 401-432, April.
    3. Lisa Grazzini, 2016. "The Importance of the Quality of Education: Some Determinants and its Effects on Earning Returns and Economic Growth," ECONOMIA PUBBLICA, FrancoAngeli Editore, vol. 2016(2), pages 43-82.
    4. Mustafa Caglayan & Alessandro Flamini & Babak Jahanshahi, 2017. "Organized Crime and Technology," DEM Working Papers Series 136, University of Pavia, Department of Economics and Management.
    5. Guarini, Giulio & Porcile, Gabriel, 2016. "Sustainability in a post-Keynesian growth model for an open economy," Ecological Economics, Elsevier, vol. 126(C), pages 14-22.
    6. Bloom, David E. & Canning, David & Kotschy, Rainer & Prettner, Klaus & Schünemann, Johannes, 2018. "Health and Economic Growth: Reconciling the Micro and Macro Evidence," IZA Discussion Papers 11940, Institute of Labor Economics (IZA).
    7. Xiao Jiang & Chau Nguyen, 2018. "A Revisit to the Forgotten Debate after Half-Century: Balanced Versus Unbalanced Growth," Working Papers 1817, New School for Social Research, Department of Economics.
    8. Balart, Pau & Oosterveen, Matthijs & Webbink, Dinand, 2015. "Test Scores, Noncognitive Skills and Economic Growth," IZA Discussion Papers 9559, Institute of Labor Economics (IZA).
    9. Mustafa, Ghulam & Rizov, Marian & Kernohan, David, 2017. "Growth, human development, and trade: The Asian experience," Economic Modelling, Elsevier, vol. 61(C), pages 93-101.
    10. Roger Alejandro Banegas Rivero & Marco Alberto Nuñez Ramirez & Jorge Salas Vargas & Luis Fernando Escobar Caba & Sacnicté Valdez del Río, 2019. "Landlocked Countries, Natural Resources and Growth: The Double Economic Curse Hypothesis," International Journal of Energy Economics and Policy, Econjournals, vol. 9(5), pages 113-124.
    11. Rovo,Natasha, 2020. "Structural Reforms to Set the Growth Ambition," Policy Research Working Paper Series 9175, The World Bank.
    12. Belzil, Christian & Hansen, Jörgen & Liu, Xingfei, 2011. "Dynamic Skill Accumulation, Comparative Advantages, Compulsory Schooling, and Earnings," IZA Discussion Papers 6167, Institute of Labor Economics (IZA).
    13. Shafaq Salam & Muhammad Hafeez & Muhammad Tariq Mahmood & Kashif Iqbal & Kashifa Akbar, 2019. "The Dynamic Relation between Technology Adoption, Technology Innovation, Human Capital and Economy: Comparison of Lower-Middle-Income Countries," Interdisciplinary Description of Complex Systems - scientific journal, Croatian Interdisciplinary Society Provider Homepage: http://indecs.eu, vol. 17(1-B), pages 146-161.
    14. Omar Essardi & Redouane Razzouk, 2017. "Human Capital and Economic Growth in Morocco: Evidence from Bayesian Model Averaging," International Business Research, Canadian Center of Science and Education, vol. 10(12), pages 167-182, December.
    15. Philip Kostov & Julie Le Gallo, 2018. "What role for human capital in the growth process: new evidence from endogenous latent factor panel quantile regressions," Scottish Journal of Political Economy, Scottish Economic Society, vol. 65(5), pages 501-527, November.
    16. Teixeira, Aurora A.C. & Queirós, Anabela S.S., 2016. "Economic growth, human capital and structural change: A dynamic panel data analysis," Research Policy, Elsevier, vol. 45(8), pages 1636-1648.
    17. Balart, Pau & Oosterveen, Matthijs & Webbink, Dinand, 2018. "Test scores, noncognitive skills and economic growth," Economics of Education Review, Elsevier, vol. 63(C), pages 134-153.

    More about this item

    Keywords

    Human Capital; Growth Regressions; Specification.;

    JEL classification:

    • O47 - Economic Development, Innovation, Technological Change, and Growth - - Economic Growth and Aggregate Productivity - - - Empirical Studies of Economic Growth; Aggregate Productivity; Cross-Country Output Convergence
    • O11 - Economic Development, Innovation, Technological Change, and Growth - - Economic Development - - - Macroeconomic Analyses of Economic Development
    • O15 - Economic Development, Innovation, Technological Change, and Growth - - Economic Development - - - Economic Development: Human Resources; Human Development; Income Distribution; Migration
    • E24 - Macroeconomics and Monetary Economics - - Consumption, Saving, Production, Employment, and Investment - - - Employment; Unemployment; Wages; Intergenerational Income Distribution; Aggregate Human Capital; Aggregate Labor Productivity

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