Oil Royalties and the Provision of Public Education in Brazil

72 Pages Posted: 2 Aug 2019 Last revised: 23 Jul 2023

See all articles by Jeff Chan

Jeff Chan

Wilfrid Laurier University

Ridwan Karim

Wilfrid Laurier University

Date Written: May 12, 2020


This paper examines how resource-based windfalls to Brazilian municipalities’ revenues affects their provision of education. Using within-municipality variation in per capita oil revenues transferred to municipalities, we find that receiving more oil royalties increases municipal education expenditures, which translates into more teachers, classrooms, and schools per capita. These effects are present only for municipally funded schools, implying that increased educational provision is due to better funding and not through increased demand for schooling. We also find, however, that some evidence that some types of school infrastructure and services may be affected by oil royalties, implying that this additional schooling coverage may be of lower quality. Interestingly, despite the increased provision of education student outcomes like the dropout rate worsen with higher oil royalties, although this may be due to changes in student composition.

Keywords: oil royalties, public education, Brazil

JEL Classification: O13, Q33, R53

Suggested Citation

Chan, Jeff and Karim, Ridwan, Oil Royalties and the Provision of Public Education in Brazil (May 12, 2020). Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=3408247 or http://dx.doi.org/10.2139/ssrn.3408247

Jeff Chan (Contact Author)

Wilfrid Laurier University ( email )

75 University Avenue West
Waterloo, Ontario N2L 3C5

Ridwan Karim

Wilfrid Laurier University ( email )

75 University Ave W
waterloo, ontario N2L 3C5

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