Demographic Change and Public Education Spending: A Conflict between Young and Old?

26 Pages Posted: 7 Nov 2005

See all articles by Stefan C. Wolter

Stefan C. Wolter

Swiss Coordination Centre for Research in Education (SKBF); University of Bern - Department of Economics

Ueli Grob

University of Bern

Date Written: October 2005

Abstract

Demographic change in industrial countries will influence educational spending in potentially two ways. On the one hand, the decline in the number of school-age children should alleviate the financial pressure. On the other hand, the theoretical/empirical literature has established that the concomitantly increasing proportion of elderly in the population can influence the propensity of politicians to spend on education. Using a panel of the Swiss Cantons for the period from 1990 to 2002, we find that the education system has exhibited little elasticity in adjusting to changes in the school-age population, and that the share of the elderly population has a significantly negative influence on the willingness to spend on public education.

Keywords: public finance, education finance, demographics, panel estimates, Switzerland

JEL Classification: H72, I22, J18

Suggested Citation

Wolter, Stefan C. and Grob, Ueli, Demographic Change and Public Education Spending: A Conflict between Young and Old? (October 2005). CESifo Working Paper Series No. 1555, Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=843326 or http://dx.doi.org/10.2139/ssrn.843326

Stefan C. Wolter (Contact Author)

Swiss Coordination Centre for Research in Education (SKBF) ( email )

CH - 5000 Aarau
Switzerland
+41 62 835 23 90 (Phone)
+41 62 835 23 99 (Fax)

HOME PAGE: http://www.skbf-csre.ch

University of Bern - Department of Economics ( email )

Gesellschaftstrasse 49
Bern, CH-3012
Switzerland
+41 31 631 40 95 (Phone)
+41 31 631 39 92 (Fax)

Ueli Grob

University of Bern ( email )

Gesellschaftsstrasse 49
CH-3012 Bern, BERN 3001
Switzerland

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