Evidence of Returns to Schooling in Africa from Household Surveys: Monitoring and Restructuring the Market for Education

55 Pages Posted: 17 Jan 2004

See all articles by T. Paul Schultz

T. Paul Schultz

Yale University - Economic Growth Center; IZA Institute of Labor Economics

Date Written: December 2003

Abstract

Wage-differentials by education of men and women are examined from African household surveys to suggest private wage returns to schooling. It is commonly asserted that returns are highest at primary school levels and decrease at secondary and postsecondary levels, whereas private returns in six African countries are today highest at the secondary and post secondary levels, and rates are similar for women as for men. The large public subsidies for postsecondary education in Africa, therefore, are not needed to motivate students to enroll, and those who have in the past enrolled in these levels of education are disproportionately from the better-educated families. Higher education in Africa could be more efficient and more equitably distributed if the children of well-educated parents paid the public costs of their schooling, and these tuition revenues facilitated the expansion of higher education and financed fellowships for children of the poor and less educated parents.

Keywords: Africa, Wage Returns to Schooling, Inequality, HIV/AIDS

JEL Classification: O15, O55, J31, J24

Suggested Citation

Schultz, T. Paul, Evidence of Returns to Schooling in Africa from Household Surveys: Monitoring and Restructuring the Market for Education (December 2003). Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=487476

T. Paul Schultz (Contact Author)

Yale University - Economic Growth Center ( email )

Box 208269
New Haven, CT 06520-8269
United States
203-432-3620 (Phone)
203-432-5591 (Fax)

IZA Institute of Labor Economics

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

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