Are skill-intensive imports from rich nations deskilling emerging economies?

Raphael Auer, 10 December 2010

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Among economists and policymakers alike, there is now a sense of agreement that import competition from low-wage countries has caused a decline in the relative wage of unskilled workers in rich nations, probably best summarised by Krugman’s verdict that the impact of trade on wages “is big, and getting bigger” (see

Topics: Development, Education, International trade
Tags: development, education, emerging economies, international trade, wages

The historical roots of inequality

Graziella Bertocchi, Arcangelo Dimico, 14 November 2010

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In March 2010 President Obama presented the US Congress a plan to reform No Child Left Behind (NCLB), America’s main federal education programme. NCLB was enacted in 2002 under President Bush with the full bipartisan support of Congress. Yet one of the criticisms to NCLB stresses its failure to reduce the deeply rooted racial and ethnic gaps that still afflict the US education system.

Topics: Education, Poverty and income inequality
Tags: education, racial inequality, slavery, US

Childcare subsidies and child wellbeing

Chris Herbst, Erdal Tekin, 9 October 2010

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Childcare subsidies are increasingly used by state and local governments to facilitate employment and reduce welfare use among economically disadvantaged families in the US. Most public expenditures on child care assistance in the US are funnelled through the federal Child Care and Development Fund (created as part of the 1996 welfare reform).

Topics: Education, Poverty and income inequality
Tags: childcare, education, US

Producing superstars for the economic Mundial: The team in the tail

Lant Pritchett, Martina Viarengo , 20 August 2010

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In the World Cup (or Mundial in Spanish), the tails matter. Each nation’s destiny depends on the players on the pitch. The question is not which nation has the highest average quality of football players among its population nor which nation has the best single player but which country can assemble a team of 11 at their various positions, who can beat all comers.

Topics: Development, Education, Labour markets, Productivity and Innovation
Tags: development, education, innovation, Labour Markets

The effect of home computer use on children’s outcomes

Ofer Malamud, Cristian Pop-Eleches , 21 July 2010

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There are large disparities in computer ownership both between and within countries. Estimates from the OECD's 2003 Programme for International Student Assessment (PISA) indicate that most 15 year old students in developed countries have access to a computer at home (91% in the US).

Topics: Education, Productivity and Innovation
Tags: computers, digital divide, education, Voucher schemes

The long-term impact of life before birth

Douglas Almond, Janet Currie, 24 June 2010

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The last decade has seen a blossoming of research on the long-term effects of early childhood conditions across a range of disciplines. In economics, the focus is on how human capital accumulation responds to the early childhood environment. This work has been spurred by a growing realisation that early life conditions can have persistent and profound impacts on later life.

Topics: Health economics
Tags: Early childhood, education, social interventions

The university as an internal labour market

Catherine M. Haeck, Frank Verboven, 17 June 2010

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During the past decade policymakers have spent considerable effort to reform European universities. Aghion et al. (2008) provide a critical review of recent higher education policies and an agenda for desirable reforms.

Topics: Education, Labour markets
Tags: education, higher education, research, teaching

Being the educational world leader helped Prussia catch up in the Industrial Revolution

Ludger Woessmann, Sascha O Becker, Erik Hornung, 9 May 2010

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The Industrial Revolution was British, which is why British evidence sets the received wisdom on the Industrial Revolution. Consequently, the received wisdom in the literature is that – contrary to economic growth in the 20th century – formal education had no role in economic development during the Industrial Revolution (Mitch 1993 and Mokyr 1990).

Topics: Development, Economic history, Education
Tags: education, Industrial Revolution, Prussia

The good, the bad, and the average: Evidence of ability peer effects in schools

Victor Lavy, Olmo Silva , Felix Weinhardt, 10 February 2010

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The estimation of peer effects at school has received intense attention in recent years. Several studies have presented convincing evidence about race, gender, and immigrants’ peer effects.

Topics: Education
Tags: education, peer influence, UK schools

The impact of class size on the performance of university students

Oriana Bandiera, Valentino Larcinese, Imran Rasul, 11 January 2010

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The organisation of university education is increasingly in the spotlight, both in academic and policy circles.

Topics: Education
Tags: education, OECD, tertiary education

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