The Impact of Sustained Attention on Labor Market Outcomes: The Case of Ghana

31 Pages Posted: 6 Dec 2014 Last revised: 8 Aug 2018

See all articles by Chih Ming Tan

Chih Ming Tan

University of North Dakota - College of Business & Public Administration - Department of Economics

Dhanushka Thamarapani

California State University, Chico

Multiple version iconThere are 2 versions of this paper

Date Written: June 17, 2018

Abstract

In this paper, we go beyond traditional measures of cognitive abilities (IQ) in explaining labor market and social outcomes in developing countries. We exploit a rich dataset from Ghana that provides information on demographics, labor market outcomes, and a direct measure of cognitive ability along with other test scores to construct a measure of sustained attention. Our work is therefore related to the broader literature in Psychology on the importance of executive function on individual behavior and outcomes. We find that, at least for the case of Ghana, after controlling for IQ and other covariates, higher levels of sustained attention are associated with higher educational attainment and a higher likelihood of being employed in a white collar job.

Keywords: Ghana, Executive Function, Cognitive and Noncognitive Abilities, Education, Occupational Choice

JEL Classification: I10, I15, J24, J30, O12, O55

Suggested Citation

Tan, Chih Ming and Thamarapani, Dhanushka, The Impact of Sustained Attention on Labor Market Outcomes: The Case of Ghana (June 17, 2018). Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=2534142 or http://dx.doi.org/10.2139/ssrn.2534142

Chih Ming Tan (Contact Author)

University of North Dakota - College of Business & Public Administration - Department of Economics ( email )

293 Centennial Drive Stop 8369
Grand Forks, ND 58202-8369
United States

HOME PAGE: http://sites.google.com/site/chihmingtan/home

Dhanushka Thamarapani

California State University, Chico ( email )

400 W 1st Street
Chico, CA 95928
United States

HOME PAGE: http://dthamarapani.com

Register to save articles to
your library

Register

Paper statistics

Downloads
69
Abstract Views
434
rank
337,754
PlumX Metrics