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Human capital and growth : the recovered role of education systems

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  • Dessus, Sebastien

Abstract

Recent empirical studies question conventional wisdom about the importance of education to growth. These results partly reflect how international differences in the quality of education systems--defined by the systems'ability to produce one marginal unit of productive human capital--are not taken into account. The author estimates neoclassical growth models on panel data in which the elasticity of human capital depends stochastically on different characteristics of the education system. Among characteristics that explain differences in quality are education infrastructure, the initial endowment of human capital, and the ability to distribute educational services equally among potential students. Giving priority to primary education for all rather than secondary educationto a few is more likely to foster growth (for the same fiscal burden). But parallel actions are also probably needed--for example, promoting institutions that motivate skilled workers to spend time on growth-promoting activities and encouraging the inflow of foreign technologies to maximize the social return to public investment in education.

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  • Dessus, Sebastien, 2001. "Human capital and growth : the recovered role of education systems," Policy Research Working Paper Series 2632, The World Bank.
  • Handle: RePEc:wbk:wbrwps:2632
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    References listed on IDEAS

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    Cited by:

    1. Ajitava Raychaudhuri & Prabir De, 2007. "Assessing Barriers to Trade in Education Services in Developing Asia - Pacific Countries:An Empirical Exercise," Working Papers 3407, Asia-Pacific Research and Training Network on Trade (ARTNeT), an initiative of UNESCAP and IDRC, Canada..
    2. Rossana PatrĂ³n, 2006. "Enhancing the Public Provision of Education: The Economics of Education Reform in Developing Countries," Documentos de Trabajo (working papers) 1106, Department of Economics - dECON.
    3. Martin, Will, 2005. "Outgrowing resource dependence theory and some recent developments," Policy Research Working Paper Series 3482, The World Bank.
    4. Rafaelita M. Aldaba & Gloria O. Pasadilla, 2010. "The ASEAN Services Sector and the Growth Rebalancing Model," Working Papers id:2922, eSocialSciences.

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    Keywords

    Economic Theory&Research; Labor Policies; Capital Markets and Capital Flows; Decentralization; Social Capital; Economic Theory&Research; Achieving Shared Growth; Inequality; Economic Growth; Social Capital;

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