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Sheepskin Effects in the Returns to Education by Ethnic Group: Evidence from Northeastern Brazil

  • Jean-Louis Arcand

    (CERDI-CNRS, University of Auvergne & European Development Network)

  • Béatrice d'Hombres

    (CERDI-CNRS, University of Auvergne & University of Padua)

The purpose of this paper is to examine inter-ethnic differences in the returns to education for the three main ethnic groups in the Metropolitan Region of Salvador (MRS), Bahia state, in Northeastern Brazil. Our results suggest that sheepskin effects take the traditional form of an additional return to the completion of a diploma for whites, whereas for blacks the additional return stems entirely from the sheepskin-like effect associated with admission to university. We show that it is possible to explain the observed pattern of inter-ethnic differences in the returns to education using a model of statistical discrimination that builds on the work of S. Lundberg and R. Startz and incorporates differences in the cost of acquiring an education that are usually associated with signaling models.

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File URL: http://128.118.178.162/eps/lab/papers/0510/0510014.pdf
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Paper provided by EconWPA in its series Labor and Demography with number 0510014.

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Length: 25 pages
Date of creation: 13 Oct 2005
Date of revision:
Handle: RePEc:wpa:wuwpla:0510014
Note: Type of Document - pdf; pages: 25
Contact details of provider: Web page: http://128.118.178.162

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  1. Belman, Dale & Heywood, John S, 1991. "Sheepskin Effects in the Returns to Education: An Examination on Women and Minorities," The Review of Economics and Statistics, MIT Press, vol. 73(4), pages 720-24, November.
  2. Spence, A Michael, 1973. "Job Market Signaling," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, MIT Press, vol. 87(3), pages 355-74, August.
  3. Harry Anthony Patrinos, 1996. "Non-linearities in the returns to education: sheepskin effects or threshold levels of human capital?," Applied Economics Letters, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 3(3), pages 171-173.
  4. Lam. D. & Schoeni, R.F., 1996. "Effects on Family Background on Earnings and Returns to Schooling: Evidence from Brazil," Papers 96-13, RAND - Reprint Series.
  5. Richard Startz & Lundberg, . "Private Discrimination and Social Intervention in Competitive Labor Markets," Rodney L. White Center for Financial Research Working Papers 19-81, Wharton School Rodney L. White Center for Financial Research.
  6. Arkes, Jeremy, 1999. "What Do Educational Credentials Signal and Why Do Employers Value Credentials?," Economics of Education Review, Elsevier, vol. 18(1), pages 133-141, February.
  7. Jaeger, David A & Page, Marianne E, 1996. "Degrees Matter: New Evidence on Sheepskin Effects in the Returns to Education," The Review of Economics and Statistics, MIT Press, vol. 78(4), pages 733-40, November.
  8. Dennis J. Aigner & Glen G. Cain, 1977. "Statistical theories of discrimination in labor markets," Industrial and Labor Relations Review, ILR Review, Cornell University, ILR School, vol. 30(2), pages 175-187, January.
  9. Oettinger, Gerald S, 1996. "Statistical Discrimination and the Early Career Evolution of the Black-White Wage Gap," Journal of Labor Economics, University of Chicago Press, vol. 14(1), pages 52-78, January.
  10. Arrow, Kenneth J., 1973. "Higher education as a filter," Journal of Public Economics, Elsevier, vol. 2(3), pages 193-216, July.
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