Does Education Matter for Economic Growth?

29 Pages Posted: 5 Jan 2013

See all articles by Michael Delgado

Michael Delgado

affiliation not provided to SSRN

Daniel J. Henderson

University of Alabama; Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA); Xiamen University - Wang Yanan Institute for Studies in Economics (WISE)

Christopher F. Parmeter

Virginia Polytechnic Institute & State University

Abstract

Empirical growth regressions typically include mean years of schooling as a proxy for human capital. However, empirical research often finds that the sign and significance of schooling depends on the sample of observations or the specification of the model. We use a nonparametric local-linear regression estimator and a nonparametric variable relevance test to conduct a rigorous and systematic search for significance of mean years of schooling by examining five of the most comprehensive schooling databases. Contrary to a few recent papers that have identified significant nonlinearities between education and growth, our results suggest that mean years of schooling is not a statistically relevant variable in growth regressions. However, we do find evidence (within a cross-sectional framework), that educational achievement, measured by mean test scores, may provide a more reliable measure of human capital than mean years of schooling.

Keywords: mean years of schooling, human capital, irrelevant variables, significance testing, nonparametric

JEL Classification: C14, J24, I20, O10, O40

Suggested Citation

Delgado, Michael and Henderson, Daniel J. and Parmeter, Christopher F., Does Education Matter for Economic Growth?. IZA Discussion Paper No. 7089, Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=2196754

Michael Delgado

affiliation not provided to SSRN

Daniel J. Henderson

University of Alabama ( email )

P.O. Box 870244
Tuscaloosa, AL 35487
United States
205-348-8991 (Phone)

HOME PAGE: http://cba.ua.edu/~djhender

Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA) ( email )

P.O. Box 7240
Bonn, D-53072
Germany

HOME PAGE: http://www.iza.org/index_html?lang=en&mainframe=http%3A//www.iza.org/en/webcontent/personnel/photos/

Xiamen University - Wang Yanan Institute for Studies in Economics (WISE)

A 307, Economics Building
Xiamen, Fujian 10246
China

Christopher F. Parmeter

Virginia Polytechnic Institute & State University ( email )

250 Drillfield Drive
Blacksburg, VA 24061
United States

Here is the Coronavirus
related research on SSRN

Paper statistics

Downloads
76
Abstract Views
1,493
rank
358,200
PlumX Metrics