Does Distance Determine Who Attends a University in Germany?

32 Pages Posted: 19 Jul 2008

See all articles by C. Katharina Spiess

C. Katharina Spiess

German Institute for Economic Research (DIW Berlin)

Katharina Wrohlich

DIW Berlin, German Institute for Economic Research

Multiple version iconThere are 2 versions of this paper

Date Written: July 2008

Abstract

We analyze the role of distance from a university in the decision to attend higher education in Germany. Students who live near a university can avoid moving and the increased living expenses by commuting. Thus, transaction cost arguments would suggest that the greater the distance to the nearest university, the lower the participation in higher education. We analyse this hypothesis by combining data from the German Socio-Economic Panel Study (SOEP) with a database from the German Rectors' Conference on university postal codes. Based on a discrete time hazard rate model we show that distance to the next university at the time of completing high school significantly affects the decision to enroll in tertiary education. Controlling for many other socio-economic and regional variables, we find that 1 kilometre distance decreases the probability to enroll in higher education by 0.2 - 0.3 percentage points.

Keywords: higher education, distance to university, competing risk model

JEL Classification: I2, R1

Suggested Citation

Spiess, C. Katharina and Wrohlich, Katharina, Does Distance Determine Who Attends a University in Germany? (July 2008). SOEPpaper No. 118. Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=1162794 or http://dx.doi.org/10.2139/ssrn.1162794

C. Katharina Spiess (Contact Author)

German Institute for Economic Research (DIW Berlin) ( email )

Mohrenstraße 58
Berlin, 10117
Germany

Katharina Wrohlich

DIW Berlin, German Institute for Economic Research ( email )

Mohrenstraße 58
Berlin, 10117
Germany

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