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Wage Differentials by Field of Study – The Case of German University Graduates

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  • Görlitz, Katja
  • Grave, Barbara S.

Abstract

Using data on German university graduates, this paper analyzes wage differentials by field of study at labor market entry and five to six years later. At both points in time, graduates from Arts and Humanities have lower average monthly wages compared to other fields of study. Blinder-Oaxaca decompositions show that these wage differentials are generated largely by different job and firm characteristics of graduates rather than individual or study-related characteristics. We also find evidence that the less favorable job and firm characteristics of Arts and Humanities graduates at labor market entry persist for (at least) the next five to six years.

Suggested Citation

  • Görlitz, Katja & Grave, Barbara S., 2012. "Wage Differentials by Field of Study – The Case of German University Graduates," Ruhr Economic Papers 316, RWI - Leibniz-Institut für Wirtschaftsforschung, Ruhr-University Bochum, TU Dortmund University, University of Duisburg-Essen.
  • Handle: RePEc:zbw:rwirep:316
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    Citations

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    Cited by:

    1. Freier, Ronny & Schumann, Mathias & Siedler, Thomas, 2015. "The earnings returns to graduating with honors — Evidence from law graduates," Labour Economics, Elsevier, vol. 34(C), pages 39-50.
    2. Bünstorf, Guido & Krabel, Stefan, 2014. "Gender and Immigration: Double Negative Effects in the Labor Market Outcomes of University Graduates in Germany?," Annual Conference 2014 (Hamburg): Evidence-based Economic Policy 100290, Verein für Socialpolitik / German Economic Association.
    3. Di Paolo, Antonio & Tansel, Aysit, 2017. "Analyzing Wage Differentials by Fields of Study: Evidence from Turkey," GLO Discussion Paper Series 91, Global Labor Organization (GLO).
    4. Freier, Ronny & Schumann, Mathias & Siedler, Thomas, 2015. "The earnings returns to graduating with honors — Evidence from law graduates," Labour Economics, Elsevier, vol. 34(C), pages 39-50.
    5. Schumann, Mathias & Freier, Ronny & Siedler, Thomas, 2014. "The Economic Returns to Graduating with Honors - Evidence from Law Graduates," Annual Conference 2014 (Hamburg): Evidence-based Economic Policy 100338, Verein für Socialpolitik / German Economic Association.
    6. Schlenker, Eva, 2013. "The Labour Supply of Women in STEM," Annual Conference 2013 (Duesseldorf): Competition Policy and Regulation in a Global Economic Order 79981, Verein für Socialpolitik / German Economic Association.
    7. Saniter, Nils & Siedler, Thomas, 2014. "Door Opener or Waste of Time? The Effects of Student Internships on Labor Market Outcomes," IZA Discussion Papers 8141, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).
    8. Lehouelleur, Sophie & Beblavý, Miroslav & Maselli,Ilaria, 2015. "How returns from tertiary education differ by field of study: Implications for policy-makers and students," CEPS Papers 10835, Centre for European Policy Studies.
    9. Eva Schlenker, 2015. "The labour supply of women in STEM," IZA Journal of European Labor Studies, Springer;Forschungsinstitut zur Zukunft der Arbeit GmbH (IZA), vol. 4(1), pages 1-17, December.

    More about this item

    Keywords

    Wage decomposition; university graduates; field of study;

    JEL classification:

    • I23 - Health, Education, and Welfare - - Education - - - Higher Education; Research Institutions
    • J24 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Demand and Supply of Labor - - - Human Capital; Skills; Occupational Choice; Labor Productivity
    • J31 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Wages, Compensation, and Labor Costs - - - Wage Level and Structure; Wage Differentials

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