At a time when governments and policy-makers put so much emphasis on 'the knowledge economy' and the economic value of education, human capital theory has never been more important. However, research in this area is often very technical and therefore not easily accessible to those who wish to use it as a guide to policy formation. This book provides an interface between such research and its potential applications in government, education and business. Reporting on a major research initiative, new findings are presented in a non-technical way on three major themes: measuring the benefits from human capital, applications of the human capital model, and policy interventions. Aimed at academic researchers and professionals concerned with the problems and techniques of human capital theory, it will also be useful for graduate courses on the economics of education to complement standard textbooks.
• Provides a comprehensive guide to the literature on human capital theory and its potential applications • Written in a highly accessible style to aid comprehension of technical research results • Ideal as a complement to standard textbooks on the economics of education
Prologue Joop Hartog and Henriëtte Maassen van den Brink; Part I. Measuring the Benefits from Human Capital: 1. What should you know about the private returns to education? Joop Hartog and Henriëtte Maassen van den Brink; 2. The social returns to education Mikael Lindahl and Erik Canton; 3. Returns to training Edwin Leuven; 4. Human capital and entrepreneurs Justin van der Sluis and Mirjam van Praag; 5. The effects of education on health Wim Groot and Henriëtte Maassen van den Brink; 6. Are successful parents the secret to success? Erik Plug; Part II. Applying and Extending the Human Capital Model: 7. Overeducation in the labour market Wim Groot and Henriëtte Maassen van den Brink; 8. Underinvestment in training Randolph Sloof, Joep Sonnemans and Hessel Oosterbeek; 9. Human capital and risk Joop Hartog and Simona Maria Bajdechi; Part III. Policy Interventions: 10. Using (quasi-) experiments to evaluate education interventions Hessel Oosterbeek; 11. Unemployment duration: policies to prevent human capital depreciation Bas van der Klaauw; 12. Can we stimulate teachers to enhance quality? Ib Waterreus; 13. Optimal tax and education policies and investments in human capital Bas Jacobs; Epilogue: some reflections on educational policies; A note on econometrics; Index.
Review of the hardback: 'This is a magnificent book showing how a creative and sophisticated research group can address some of the most pressing theoretical and policy issues using sophisticated empirical approaches. The book is highly readable and should be useful in both courses in the economics of education and labour economics as well as in assisting policy-makers to understand the latest insights on matters that are paramount on the policy agendas of most industrialised countries.' William Heard Kilpatrick, Columbia University and David Jacks, Stanford University
Review of the hardback: 'Not a summary volume nor an exposition of original research, but both! The book covers a huge array of topics in human capital and education, with experts on specific aspects expositing what we know, what the research problems are and what some new contributions have expanded our knowledge.' Daniel S. Hamermesh, University of Texas at Austin
Review of the hardback: 'The book covers an impressively broad spectrum of topics in the economics of education. Learning in schools and at the workplace is covered as well as learning's impact on a wide variety of outcomes including individual earnings, firm productivity, economic growth, health and the next generation. The authors report their own research findings and put them into the perspective of the international research frontier, yet in a way that makes the book accessible for policy makers and journalists.' Anders Björklund, Stockholm University