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‘Every Catholic Child in a Catholic School’: Historical Resistance to State Schooling, Contemporary Private Competition and Student Achievement across Countries*

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Abstract

Nineteenth-century Catholic doctrine strongly opposed state schooling. We show that countries with larger shares of Catholics in 1900 (but without a Catholic state religion) tend to have larger shares of privately operated schools even today. We use this historical pattern as a natural experiment to estimate the causal effect of contemporary private competition on student achievement in cross-country student-level analyses. Our results show that larger shares of privately operated schools lead to better student achievement in mathematics, science and reading, and to lower total education spending, even after controlling for current Catholic shares.

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... Literacy rates were indeed lower among Catholics than Protestants and more generally in Catholic countries. West and Woessmann (2010) observe that even today Catholic students achieve lower scores on PISA tests. ...
... Catholic authorities took a negative stance on state-provided education in the XIXth century, when the subordination of secular to religious knowledge was put at risk by the development in industrializing countries of mass education systems. West and Woessmann (2010) recall that Pope Pius IX condemned the approval by Catholics of an education system unconnected with the Church in his 1864 Syllabus Errorum (Pius IX, 1864). The Catholic Church's suspicion of state-provided education was emphasized, at least until the 1929 encyclical Divini illius magistri published by Pope Pius XI (McClelland, 1996;Pius XI, 1929), which recalled that secular education was subordinate to religious education and forbade Catholic children to attend public schools. ...
... The Catholic Church's suspicion of state-provided education was emphasized, at least until the 1929 encyclical Divini illius magistri published by Pope Pius XI (McClelland, 1996;Pius XI, 1929), which recalled that secular education was subordinate to religious education and forbade Catholic children to attend public schools. The Church's opposition to state interference in education led to the development of a network of Catholic schools in countries where Catholicism was not the state religion (West and Woessmann, 2010). ...
Article
We test whether major religious denominations correlate with education in a uniform way across the world and the extent to which minority status contributes to the correlation. Using individual data from the World Values Survey for 77 countries, we first find that no denomination is consistently associated with education and, in fact, for each denomination we study there are countries where its correlation with education is significantly positive, significantly negative, or statistically insignificant. To explain this unexpected result, we relate our first finding to minority status and find that denominations that are a minority in a given country positively correlate with the level of education of their followers in that country. Both findings uphold a series of robustness checks, including changing the definition of minority religions, excluding outliers, and changing the measure of education.
... The first study to find a causal relationship between privates schooling and PISA scores took advantage of a natural experiment. West and Woessmann (2010) had access to the proportion of the population that identified as Catholic in 1900 and used that measure as an exogenous instrument to predict whether an individual student was in a private school over a hundred years later, in 2003. Using this experimental setting, West and Woessmann (2010) found that private schooling had substantially large impacts on individual student PISA scores in 2003. ...
... West and Woessmann (2010) had access to the proportion of the population that identified as Catholic in 1900 and used that measure as an exogenous instrument to predict whether an individual student was in a private school over a hundred years later, in 2003. Using this experimental setting, West and Woessmann (2010) found that private schooling had substantially large impacts on individual student PISA scores in 2003. Heller-Sahlgren (2018) applied the same instrumental variable for the sample of around 295,000 children from 34 OECD countries that took the 2012 PISA exam and survey. ...
... Since whether a student is in a private school in 2009 is obviously endogenous to the OLS model, I follow the literature by West & Woessmann (2010), Heller-Sahlgren (2018), and others by using a two-stage-least-squares regression (2SLS) approach of the form: ...
... The first study to find a causal relationship between privates schooling and PISA scores took advantage of a natural experiment. West and Woessmann (2010) had access to the proportion of the population that identified as Catholic in 1900 and used that measure as an exogenous instrument to predict whether an individual student was in a private school over 100 years later, in 2003. Using this experimental setting, West and Woessmann (2010) found that private schooling had substantially large impacts on individual student PISA scores in 2003. ...
... West and Woessmann (2010) had access to the proportion of the population that identified as Catholic in 1900 and used that measure as an exogenous instrument to predict whether an individual student was in a private school over 100 years later, in 2003. Using this experimental setting, West and Woessmann (2010) found that private schooling had substantially large impacts on individual student PISA scores in 2003. Heller-Sahlgren (2018) applied the same instrumental variable for the sample of around 295,000 children from 34 OECD countries who took the 2012 PISA exam and survey. ...
... Since whether a student is in a private school in 2009 is obviously endogenous to the OLS model, I follow the literature by West and Woessmann (2010), Heller-Sahlgren (2018), and others by using a two-stage least-squares regression (2SLS) approach of the form: ...
Article
This study estimates the effects of private schooling on noncognitive outcomes as measured by patterns of student responses on exams and surveys. I use Programme for International Student Assessment (PISA) data from over 300,000 individual students within 44 countries in 2009 and a historical natural experiment to estimate the causal impact of private schooling on student effort. Since nations with larger shares of Catholics in 1900 tend to have larger shares of private schooling today, the study uses the Catholic share of the population in 1900 as an exogenous instrument to predict whether a given child is in a private school in 2009. The results suggest that private schooling increases student effort on PISA tests, as measured by test decline, while decreasing diligence on student surveys, as measured by careless answer patterns and nonresponse rates. In addition, I find that private schooling substantially increases PISA test scores, and that stronger noncognitive skills are associated with higher PISA scores. Since this is the first study to connect school sector to these noncognitive outcomes, additional research on this topic is especially welcome. More research is also needed on the validity of measures such as test decline, careless answer patterns, and nonresponse rates.
... The first study to find a causal relationship between privates schooling and PISA scores took advantage of a natural experiment. West and Woessmann (2010) had access to the proportion of the population that identified as Catholic in 1900 and used that measure as an exogenous instrument to predict whether an individual student was in a private school over a hundred years later, in 2003. Using this experimental setting, West and Woessmann (2010) found that private schooling had substantially large impacts on individual student PISA scores in 2003. ...
... West and Woessmann (2010) had access to the proportion of the population that identified as Catholic in 1900 and used that measure as an exogenous instrument to predict whether an individual student was in a private school over a hundred years later, in 2003. Using this experimental setting, West and Woessmann (2010) found that private schooling had substantially large impacts on individual student PISA scores in 2003. Heller-Sahlgren (2018) applied the same instrumental variable for the sample of around 295,000 children from 34 OECD countries that took the 2012 PISA exam and survey. ...
... Since whether a student is in a private school in 2009 is obviously endogenous to the OLS model, I follow the literature by West & Woessmann (2010), Heller-Sahlgren (2018), and others by using a two-stage-least-squares regression (2SLS) approach of the form: ...
... Literacy rates were indeed lower among Catholics than Protestants and more generally in Catholic countries. West and Woessmann (2010) observe that even today Catholic students achieve lower scores on PISA tests. ...
... Catholic authorities took a negative stance on state-provided education in the XIXth century, when the subordination of secular to religious knowledge was put at risk by the development in industrializing countries of mass education systems. West and Woessmann (2010) recall that Pope Pius IX condemned the approval by Catholics of an education system unconnected with the Church in his 1864 Syllabus Errorum (Pius IX, 1864). The Catholic Church's suspicion of state-provided education was emphasized, at least until the 1929 encyclical Divini illius magistri published by Pope Pius XI (McClelland, 1996;Pius XI, 1929), which recalled that secular education was subordinate to religious education and forbade Catholic children to attend public schools. ...
... The Catholic Church's suspicion of state-provided education was emphasized, at least until the 1929 encyclical Divini illius magistri published by Pope Pius XI (McClelland, 1996;Pius XI, 1929), which recalled that secular education was subordinate to religious education and forbade Catholic children to attend public schools. The Church's opposition to state interference in education led to the development of a network of Catholic schools in countries where Catholicism was not the state religion (West and Woessmann, 2010). ...
... While the causal research connecting private schooling and PISA scores has been limited, Hanushek and Woessmann (2010) pointed out their optimism about research on the topic, stating that the outlook for international studies was "clearly bright" since "more than 60 countries" were planning to participate in the 2012 PISA exam. West and Woessmann (2010) used 2003 PISA data for 29 nation-states and found that countries with higher private share of schooling were associated with improved international test scores. Importantly, they used the percent of Catholics within a country from the year 1900 as an instrument to predict current private share of schooling. ...
... Our study improves upon West and Woessmann (2010) in two ways. First, we have access to five separate years of data for over 60 nations, so we can use year and country fixed effects in order to compare PISA scores within, rather than across, countries. ...
... ,Fuchs and Woessmann (2007), Schultz (2009),Hanushek and Woessmann (2010), andWest and Woessmann (2010). Also,Woessmann (2003),Woessmann (2005),Fuchs and Woessmann (2007), andHanushek and Woessmann (2010) provide empirical estimates regarding school autonomy, conditional on the existence of external exit exams (as a measure of school accountability). ...
... Also,Woessmann (2003),Woessmann (2005),Fuchs and Woessmann (2007), andHanushek and Woessmann (2010) provide empirical estimates regarding school autonomy, conditional on the existence of external exit exams (as a measure of school accountability). Finally, recent empirical estimates with respect to grade retention can be found in Schultz (2009),West and Woessmann (2010), andPereira and Reis (2014). ...
Article
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Within a partnership between GPEARI and CEF.UP, this report relies on a dynamic stochastic general equilibrium model with endogenous growth to assess the macroeconomic impact of some of the structural reforms put forward over 2010-2014 by Portugal in the areas of Justice and Education. In Justice, we cover for reforms impacting "Overall system efficiency" and "Insolvency regime", while in Education the focus is on "Development of early intervention strategies", "Promotion of school autonomy", "Introduction of vocational tracks" and "Consolidation of the implementation of curricula goals". In a first step, reform measures are associated with the impact on sectoral (Justice or Education) indicators. In a second step, these indicators are linked with microeconomic outcomes, which are then translated into shocks to the European Commission's QUEST III model with endogenous growth, allowing us to derive the expected impact on macroeconomic aggregates. Our results show that reforms deliver large potential effects in the medium-to-long-run, although dependent on the transmission mechanism. In Justice, the strongest effects stem from improvements in the insolvency regime (through both entrepreneurship and liquidity constraint mechanisms) that may potentially increase annual GDP up to 6.2% in 50 years. As for Education, the results (through both quantity and quality of schooling) are quite strong in the long-run, potentially reaching a 6.6% improvement in annual GDP over 50 years.
... and McCleary find that economic growth is positively associated with religious beliefs in heaven and hell but negatively with church attendance across countries.13 In many Western countries, state school systems emerged during the 19 th century that aimed to serve all children.West and Woessmann (2010) document that the Catholic Church strongly opposed this secular development, urging Catholics to educate their children in non-secular Catholic schools. They show that the historical resistance to state schooling persisted: countries that had higher Catholic shares in 1900 (but did not have Catholicism as a state religion) continued to have substantially higher private school shares in 2003. ...
... Islamic waqf law used to evade inheritance law; inflexibility meant it could not turn into more advanced, long-lived institution Kuran and Lustig (2012) 16 th -19 th c Ottoman Empire Empirical Ottoman Islamic courts biased in favor of men, Muslims, and elites Kuran and Rubin (2018) Empirical Rise of early Islamic science and decline, relative to religious texts, beginning in 11 th -12 th c Saleh (2015) 19 th c Egypt Empirical Deskilling of Muslims and upskilling of Christians in first wave of industrialization; upskilling of both in second wave Saleh (2016) 1950s Egypt Empirical Reform of secular education improved outcomes for Muslims but not Christians Rubin (2011, 2016) 19 th -20 th c India Empirical Parts of British India with more recent collapse of Muslim rule had lower Muslim literacy; Princely States ruled by Muslims had lower Hindu literacy West and Woessmann (2010) OECD countries, 1900, 2003 Empirical Catholicism in 1900 related to larger private-school shares and better student achievement today Franck and Iannaccone (2014) Western countries, 1925-1990 Empirical Church attendance negatively associated with government spending on education Barro and McCleary (2005) World, 1900, 1970, 2000 Empirical Persistent element in having a state religion Bentzen (2019) World , 1981-2009 Empirical Religiosity increases in districts hit by earthquake ...
Article
This chapter surveys the recent social science literature on religion in economic history, covering both socioeconomic causes and consequences of religion. Following the rapidly growing literature, it focuses on the three main monotheisms—Judaism, Christianity, and Islam—and on the period up to WWII. Works on Judaism address Jewish occupational specialization, human capital, emancipation, and the causes and consequences of Jewish persecution. One set of papers on Christianity studies the role of the Catholic Church in European economic history since the medieval period. Taking advantage of newly digitized data and advanced econometric techniques, the voluminous literature on the Protestant Reformation studies its socioeconomic causes as well as its consequences for human capital, secularization, political change, technology diffusion, and social outcomes. Works on missionaries show that early access to Christian missions still has political, educational, and economic consequences in present-day Africa, Asia, and Latin America. Much of the economics of Islam focuses on the role that Islam and Islamic institutions played in political-economy outcomes and in the “long divergence” between the Middle East and Western Europe. Finally, cross-country analyses seek to understand the broader determinants of religious practice and its various effects across the world. We highlight three general insights that emerge from this literature. First, the monotheistic character of the Abrahamic religions facilitated a close historical interconnection of religion with political power and conflict. Second, human capital often played a leading role in the interconnection between religion and economic history. Third, many socioeconomic factors matter in the historical development of religions.
... In addition, the definition of what it means to be a private school could be inconsistent across countries, further leading to biased estimates in across-country analyses. West and Woessmann (2010) used 2003 PISA data for 29 nation states and found that countries with higher private shares of schooling were associated with improved international test scores. Importantly, they used the percent of Catholics within a country from the year 1900 as an instrument to predict current private share of schooling. ...
... This study improves upon the methods used by West and Woessmann (2010) and Heller-Sahlgren (2018) in two ways. First, I have access to five separate years of data for 62 nations, so I am able to use year and country fixed effects in order to compare PISA scores within, rather than across, countries. ...
Article
The effects of private schooling on Programme for International Student Assessment (PISA) scores of 63 countries across the globe from 2000 to 2012 are estimated. I employ year and country fixed effects regression models and use the short-run demand for schooling within a country and year as an instrument to predict private share of schooling enrollment. I find evidence to suggest that an increased share of private schooling leads to improved PISA scores around the world. Specifically, the model using control variables alongside country and year fixed effects finds that a 1 percentage point increase in the private share of schooling enrollment is associated with a 1.4-point increase in math scores and a 1.1-point increase in reading scores. However, only the reading result remains statistically significant in the instrumental variables analysis.
... Given the particular advantage that ESCS affords to 1G immigrant students, governments may consider allocating additional funds, through per capita funding mechanisms, for example, to support the education of 1G immigrants in both the private and public school sectors. Research has suggested that simply increasing public spending on education helps immigrant students' achievement and educational equality (Marlow, 2000;Schlicht et al., 2010;West & Woessmann, 2008). Therefore, specific financial provisions for 1G students may function to reduce immigrant achievement gaps. ...
Article
Full-text available
The present study explores the antecedents of frst- and second-generation (1G and 2G) immigrant students’ academic performance using PISA 2018 data. The study draws on an international sample of 11,582 students from 534 schools in 20 countries and focuses on PISA schools that catered to a mix of 1G and 2G students. The study explores the role that student attributes, student-perceived peer and parental support, school provisions, and school equity-oriented policies have on immigrant student academic achievement. The analysis involved specifying three separate stepwise multi-level regression models for mathematics, science, and reading achievement. Findings suggested that, at the within-school level, perceived parental support and teacher enthusiasm and the adaption of instruction were associated with improved academic performance, while student experience of bullying was associated with more substantive negative academic outcomes. At the betweenschool level, the opportunity to participate in creative extracurricular activities was associated with improved academic performance. In contrast, a higher proportion of 1G students and the overall perceived level of bullying of immigrant students were associated with substantively negative academic outcomes between schools. Tests of moderation efects suggested that parental emotional support appeared to be of particular relevance to 1G students’ math and reading outcomes, while enhanced SES status appeared to be specifcally relevant to improved science and reading outcomes for 1G students. Implications for policy and practice are discussed.
... Martin R. West and Ludger Woessmann used PISA data from 29 countries in 2003 and found that students in private schools had much higher standardized test scores. 12 More recently, Gabriel Heller-Sahlgren found that private schooling had similarly large positive effects on PISA scores for students from 34 different countries in 2012. 13 Importantly, the studies by West and Woessmann and Heller-Sahlgren used the share of each country's Catholic population in the year 1900 as an instrumental variable to predict the likelihood that a given student was in a private school in 2003 or 2012. ...
Article
Full-text available
The potential benefits of increased access to private school choice programs in the United States remain a hot topic in educational policy. According to economic theory, private schooling should improve student achievement by increasing competitive pressures on educators to provide high-quality educational experiences. In addition, since children have differing interests, abilities, and learning styles, private school choice would allow for an improved match between educators and students. To see if these market benefits materialize, I examine the effect that increased access to private schooling has on international student test scores in 52 countries around the world. Notably, this study establishes causal relationships by comparing these countries to themselves over time while controlling for any fluctuations in gross domestic product, government expenditures, population, school enrollment, life expectancy, and infant mortality. I find that a 1 percentage point increase in the private share of total primary schooling enrollment would lead to moderate increases in student math, reading, and science achievement within nations.
... Evidence suggests that private schools slightly outperform public schools on improving student achievement within the US as well as internationally (Betts & Tang, 2011;Forster, 2016;Greene, 2005;Shakeel, Anderson, & Wolf, 2016;Tooley, 2005;Tooley, Bao, Dixon, & Merrifield, 2011). Most of the school choice studies focus on student achievement (West & Woessmann, 2010;Witte, 2001;Witte et al., 2014;Wolf et al., 2013). Out of the nineteen experimental studies of private school choice in the United States, the only negative findings for test scores were from the two studies of the Louisiana Scholarship Program (Abdulkadiroglu, Pathak, & Walters, 2015;Mills & Wolf, 2016). ...
... Another challenge for the identification of the private school effect is the non-random selection into private schools. Student's background characteristics that influence schooling decisions are likely to influence learning outcomes independently of school choice, since they would be related to other parental inputs (Altonji et al., 2005;West and Woessmann 2010). ...
Article
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We use measures of competitive pressure, administrative autonomy and staffing practices to explain the private-public performance difference in Australia, Portugal and Spain using the TALIS-PISA dataset. We employ OLS regression and counterfactual decomposition analysis on matched sub-samples. These school factors do not explain the overall private-public performance gap in the three countries except at the higher-end of the distribution. In other words, these factors appear to benefit only the high-performers in private schools in Australia and Spain. The results point to the potential limits of adopting private school practices for improving learning across the performance distribution especially for low-performing students.
... Evidence suggests that private schools slightly outperform public schools on improving student achievement within the US as well as internationally (Betts & Tang, 2011;Forster, 2016;Greene, 2005;Shakeel, Anderson, & Wolf, 2016;Tooley, 2005;Tooley, Bao, Dixon, & Merrifield, 2011). Most of the school choice studies focus on student achievement (West & Woessmann, 2010;Witte, 2001;Witte et al., 2014;Wolf et al., 2013). Out of the nineteen experimental studies of private school choice in the United States, the only negative findings for test scores were from the two studies of the Louisiana Scholarship Program (Abdulkadiroglu, Pathak, & Walters, 2015;Mills & Wolf, 2016). ...
Article
While substantial school choice research focuses on student achievement outcomes, little has explored the mechanisms involved in producing such outcomes. We present a comparative analysis of private and public school principals using data from the School and Staffing Survey (SASS) 2011–2012. We add to the literature by examining the differences in private and public school principals’ abilities to influence important decisions at their schools from a nationally representative sample of 9,230 school principals. Results indicate that private school leadership exhibits more autonomy in influencing school level policies, perhaps explaining private school advantages.
... Of course, a significant limitation here is that the survey was conducted in 2014 and can therefore not 11 One aspect that goes beyond the framing of this question is that the effect of vocational education on the labor market may change over the life-cycle, being advantageous at labor-market entry but disadvantageous at older ages (Hanushek et al., 2017;Hampf and Woessmann, 2016). 12 Note that the private provision as opposed to private funding of education may have very different effects on outcomes; see West and Woessmann (2010) for evidence on conducive effects of private provision and detrimental effects of private funding of schools on student achievement. ...
Article
In the political economy of education policy, interactions between policymakers and public opinion can create discrepancies between political awareness and action. While a large literature studies public opinion on different aspects of the welfare state, research has only recently started to investigate the public’s attitudes towards education policy. We survey this emerging literature with a particular focus on public preferences for education spending in different sociodemographic subgroups, policy trade-offs, support for specific education reforms, and the importance of information for public preferences. While the available evidence is multifaceted, there is some general indication that citizens place high priority on education policy, show substantial willingness to reform, and are responsive to information and adequate reform designs.
... Another potential way of analysing this issue is to consider whether historical differences lead to persistent differences in the size of the private school sector. First, West and Woessmann (2010) study the relationship between private school competition and student performance in a cross-country setting. They use the share of each country's Catholic population in 1900 as an instrument for measuring the effect of contemporary private school competition. ...
Article
The identification of the causal effects of educational policies is the top priority in recent education economics literature. As a result, a shift can be observed in the strategies of empirical studies. They have moved from the use of standard multivariate statistical methods, which identify correlations or associations between variables only, to more complex econometric strategies, which can help to identify causal relationships. However, exogenous variations in databases have to be identified in order to apply causal inference techniques. This is a far from straightforward task. For this reason, this paper provides an extensive and comprehensive overview of the literature using quasi-experimental techniques applied to three well-known international large-scale comparative assessments, such as PISA, PIRLS or TIMSS, over the period 2004–2016. In particular, we review empirical studies employing instrumental variables, regression discontinuity designs, difference in differences and propensity score matching to the above databases. Additionally, we provide a detailed summary of estimation strategies, issues treated and profitability in terms of the quality of publications to encourage further potential evaluations. The paper concludes with some operational recommendations for prospective researchers in the field.
... For many years educational researchers have made causal claims based on large-scale observational data (e.g., Coleman Report;National Educational Longitudinal Study 1988-2000High School and Beyond-HS&B), and there is now a renewed interest in drawing causal inferences from the analysis of large-scale national and international assessment data (e.g., Schneider et al. 2007;West and Woessmann 2010;Woessman 2014). To do so, statisticians, economists and other social scientists have developed methods of analysis (e.g., instrumental variable approach, propensity scores, fixed-effect models) to devise conditions that emulate random assignment by selecting "equivalent" treatment and control groups across a number of non-treatment variables (e.g., matching groups). ...
Article
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To answer the calls for stronger evidence by the policy community, educational researchers and their associated organizations increasingly demand more studies that can yield causal inferences. International large scale assessments (ILSAs) have been targeted as a rich data sources for causal research. It is in this context that we take up a discussion around causal inferences and ILSAs. Although these rich, carefully developed studies have much to offer in terms of understanding educational systems, we argue that the conditions for making strong causal inferences are rarely met. To develop our argument we first discuss, in general, the nature of causal inferences and then suggest and apply a validity framework to evaluate the tenability of claims made in two well-cited studies. The cited studies exemplify interesting design features and advances in methods of data analysis and certainly contribute to the knowledge base in educational research; however, methodological shortcomings, some of which are unavoidable even in the best of circumstances, urge a more cautious interpretation than that of strict “cause and effect.” We then discuss how findings from causal-focused research may not provide answers to the often broad questions posed by the policy community. We conclude with examples of the importance of the validity framework for the ILSA research community and a suggestion of what should be included in studies that wish to employ quasi-experimental methods with ILSA data.
... Dearden, Chris, and Luke (2011), from the United Kingdom, find that private school students have greater possibilities of reaching a higher educational level and higher income. Finally, working with samples from various countries, West and Woessmann (2010) and Fuchs and Woessmann (2007) find that when the importance of the private sector increases, the average score is higher. ...
Article
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This paper analyzes and explains the causes of the differences in school performance between public and private schools in Latin America. It uses information from the eight Latin American countries that participated in the 2012 Programme for International Student Assessment (PISA). The estimations, two steps with instrumental variables, combined with the technique of Oaxaca-Blinder decomposition, reveal that Uruguay and Brazil had the highest education gap and Colombia and Mexico the lowest. These differences are mainly explained by the observed component of the model. Specifically, the differences in individual characteristics explain the greatest proportion of gaps in performance, followed by family characteristics and school resources. In addition, the decomposition in the unobserved component suggests that students from private schools make better use of educational resources, both in their homes and in their schools.
... Vella (1999), por su parte, demuestra que, en Australia, los alumnos que han estudiado en dicho tipo de instituciones presentan más probabilidades de terminar el bachillerato, asistir a la universidad o encontrar empleo. Y respecto a trabajos que utilizan una muestra amplia de países, West & Woessmann (2010) estiman que, a medida que aumenta la importancia del sector educativo privado, los países mejoran los resultados escolares generales. Mientras que Fuchs & Woessmann (2007) constatan este efecto positivo utilizando resultados del pisa. ...
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Resumen En este artículo se busca identificar qué causa las diferencias en resultados académicos entre colegios costarricenses públicos y privados empleando la técnica de descomposición de Oaxaca-Blinder, aplicada a la base pisa 2012. La conclusión es que las diferencias, por orden de importancia, se deben a: a) las características de los hogares, b) los recursos de los centros, c) las características de los estudiantes, y d) el ambiente de trabajo en los centros. Pero también porque hay diferencias en características y factores que se aprovechan de modo distinto. Así, si los estudiantes de escue- las públicas poseen en conjunto peores características, saben sacarles mejor partido, aunque los estudiantes de los colegios privados sabrían aprovechar mejor el ambiente de trabajo en este tipo de centros educativos. Abstract In this paper we use the Oaxaca-Blinder decomposition methodology, applied to the pisa 2012 database, in order to identify the causes of the differences in academic results between public and private Costa Rican schools. In order of importance, these are caused by differences in: a) fam- ily characteristics, b) school resources, c) student characteristics, and d) working environment in the schools. The differences in the results are not only explained by the differences in charac- teristics and factors, but also by the differences in the way they are used. So, while students in public schools have collectively worst characteristics, they make better use of them. However, students in private schools obtain more output from the working environment in their schools.
... Studies t hat establish causality are therefore evaluated as more robust for policy purposes in comparison to studies that establish that two things are related (for example, see recent literature reviews by Ashley et al., 2014, or Glewwe et al., 2011. Causal studies may draw primary data from randomized field trials (see Duflo and Kremer, 2005), or they may make innovative use of existing databases, including the types of data we discuss in this commentary (for example, West & Woessmann, 2010). ...
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The objective of this commentary is to call attention to the feasibility and importance of large-scale, systematic, quantitative analysis in international and comparative education research. We contend that although many existing databases are under- or unutilized in quantitative international-comparative research, these resources present the opportunity for important, policy-relevant descriptive studies. We conclude the commentary with overarching observations about the strengths and limitations of such secondary data-based analysis.
... Since, the approach has become more popular as research has grown and researchers need ways to move around the omission of data or biased sampling. In educational research, the IV approach is most often associated with the use of test scores or education levels and trying to predict student achievement (Akerhielm, 1995;Angrist & Krueger, 1992;Psacharopoulos & Patrinos, 2010;West & Woessmann, 2010). ...
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This study sets out to calculate the financial returns of English Language Education Policies to a national economy within Asia, with a secondary goal of ascertaining whether this return is being collected by all participating countries equally. Using Thomas Green’s theory of the Educational System (1997) as a framework for exploring how education systems function in society, this study looks to education, development, and reproduction theories before turning to the history of English in Asia to gain geographical context. Using a pragmatic epistemology, I employ quantitative methodology and use data in the form of government curricula and English language syllabi from 19 countries around Asia Pacific. These represent a country’s national English Education policies and were scored based on contemporary English as a Foreign Language practices, as recommended by scholarly literature. Using the Instrumental Variable process, this constructed data pairs with an economic variable and historical data which serves as the instrumental variable. These three variables are processed through the Two Stage Least Squares regression sequence provided by SPSS. The results of the statistical analysis show that an increase of one standard deviation in the language variable results in a .618 rise in the standardized beta of the 2014 economic variable. This increase is compared with the economic data of the sample countries in hopes of identifying differences in potential financial impacts between countries, and whether results have some validity when contextualized into Asia’s education and economic hierarchy. Green’s theory then attempts to discover whether there is a systemic inequality between education systems that would encourage such an economic disparity. Reproduction Theory then attempts to evaluate how this inequality is present in institutional practices across the region. v Overall, I found English Language Education Policies have a significant return that would be considered large and small to different countries, based on their economic indicator. Furthermore, through using Green’s theories and Reproduction Theory, there are institutional practices present in elite countries that limit the working class’ abilities to access these increases to their economy via English Language Education Policies
... According to Hoxby (2003), school related cognitive differences are substantial and quite visible in students during and after schooling. West and Woessmann (2010) conducted a study on students of three schools systems (Catholic schools, Government independent schools, & Public schools) found that adolescents who studied at Catholic and government independent schools earned significantly higher scores on tests of cognition than their peers in public schools. ...
Article
The present study compared cognitive abilities and academic achievement of adolescents studying in three different school systems namely Urdu medium schools, English medium schools, and Cambridge system schools. The sample comprised of 1001 secondary school student. Cognitive abilities were assessed by Raven’s Standard Progressive Matrices (1960) and marks obtained by the students in the last annual examination were used as an index of academic achievement. Results showed that cognitive abilities of the students were positively associated with academic achievement of the respondents. It was further found that cognitive abilities and academic achievement of students studying in Cambridge school system was better as compared to those studying in other systems. Post-hoc comparison revealed that level of academic achievement of Urdu medium schools was lower as compared to English medium and Cambridge system of schools. The findings suggest that difference in schooling system influenced cognitive abilities and academic achievement of the students. Results further demonstrated that gender was a significant predictor of academic achievement in both Urdu and English medium schools. Future implications of the study were also discussed.
... Given the particular advantage that ESCS affords to 1G immigrant students, governments may consider allocating additional funds, through per capita funding mechanisms, for example, to support the education of 1G immigrants in both the private and public school sectors. Research has suggested that simply increasing public spending on education helps immigrant students' achievement and educational equality (Marlow, 2000;Schlicht et al., 2010;West & Woessmann, 2008). Therefore, specific financial provisions for 1G students may function to reduce immigrant achievement gaps. ...
... The literature continues to debate the role governmental spending on education plays in shaping academic achievement of different groups of students. West and Wößmann (2008), for instance, advocate that even privately operated schools should be financially supported by the government, as alternative arrangements could damage educational equity. Hanushek (2003) and Marlow (2000) show that simply increasing public spending on education does little to increase student achievement; they also demonstrate, though, that in many European countries, as public spending on education rises, the effect of parental education on achievement becomes smaller, and at the highest level of spending insignificant (Schlicht et al. 2010). ...
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Using data from the 2011 Trends in International Mathematics and Science Study for 45 countries, we examined the size of socioeconomic, gender, and immigrant status related gaps, and their relationships with education system characteristics, such as differentiation, standardization, and proportion of governmental spending on education. We find that higher socioeconomic status is positively and significantly associated with higher math and science achievement; immigrant students lag behind their native peers in both math and science, with first generation students faring worse than second generation; and girls show lower math performance than boys. A higher degree of differentiation makes socioeconomic gaps larger in both math and science achievement, whereas higher governmental spending reduces socioeconomic achievement gaps.
... We caution the reader, however, that our study is not a causal design and students who attend Catholic or other specific types of schools (e.g., homeschooling) may be inherently different from students who do not. Some research on general population students has documented positive Catholic school effects (e.g., Wenglinsky, 2007;West & Woessmann, 2010). Much research suggests that for students in the general population, students in private schools have higher achievement than students in public schools, even after controlling for multiple student and school characteristics (e.g., Braun, Jenkins, & Grigg, 2006; Coleman, Hoffer, & Kilgore, 1982;Petersen & Llaudet, 2006); however, some scholars have noted that differential effects of public and private schools are unclear (e.g., Wenglinsky, 2007), with other scholars documenting advantages of public schools (e.g., Lubienski & Lubienski, 2013). ...
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We examined 482,418 students who took the ACT in the seventh grade and again in high school, taking an exploratory analytic approach to examine academic growth trends from 1996 to 2017. Predictors included sociodemographics, interests, high school (HS) characteristics, HS coursework and GPA, and extracurriculars, which explained 25% of the variance in academic growth. Overall, growth improved from 2005 to 2017, but growth for low-income and Hispanic students was stagnant. Catholic and private school students had the highest growth; homeschooled and high-poverty public school students had the lowest. High growth was associated with STEM (science, technology, engineering, mathematics) elective HS courses and advanced AP, accelerated, and honors courses. Students with investigative and conventional interests had higher growth. Some extracurriculars had significant relationships with academic growth, though the effects were small.
... those who accrue government funding for operations) demonstrated higher achievement than similar students attending public schools after controlling for a comprehensive range of background factors. Similarly, West and Woessmann (2010) found that countries with higher proportions of students enrolled in private schools attained higher scores in mathematics, reading and science in the 2003 PISA tests. However, both these studies excluded Australian data from their analyses. ...
Article
A higher proportion of students are privately educated in Australia, compared with many other nations. In this paper, we tested the assumption that private schools offer better quality education than public schools. We examined differences in student achievement on the National Assessment Programme: Literacy and Numeracy (NAPLAN) between public, independent, and catholic schools. Cross-sectional regressions using large samples of students (n = 1583–1810 ) at Years 3, 5, 7 and 9 showed few sector differences in NAPLAN scores in any domain. No differences were evident after controlling for socioeconomic status and prior NAPLAN achievement. Using longitudinal modelling, we also found no sector differences in the rate of growth for reading and numeracy between Year 3 and Year 9. Results indicate that already higher achieving students are more likely to attend private schools, but private school attendance does not alter academic trajectories, thus undermining conceptions of private schools adding value to student outcomes.
... These studies mainly address the use of econometric techniques to identify significant causal relationships between student background, school-related variables and educational outcomes (typically represented by test scores). 4 The above empirical studies usually focus on some specific school factors, such as the class size Woessmann and West, 2006), instructional time (Rivkin and Schiman, 2015) or divergences in performance between public and private schools (Vandenberghe and Robin, 2004;West and Woessmann, 2010). Likewise, these approaches have also been employed in a growing body of literature analyzing the impact of specific institutional features of education systems on educational attainment (Braga et al., 2013). ...
Article
Analyzing the efficiency of educational systems is one of the main focuses of the policy debate to promote national competitiveness and future economic growth. In this paper, we assess the performance of secondary schools from 36 countries (26 OECD countries and 10 partners) participating in PISA 2012. For this purpose, we apply a robust conditional nonparametric approach that allows us to incorporate the effect of contextual factors at both school and country level in the estimation of efficiency measures. Our results suggest that there is a greater heterogeneity across countries than across schools. Particularly, we find that differences in efficiency estimates are mainly explained by economic indicators and cultural values. In contrast, some factors previously identified as potential determinants of student achievement, like the existence of tracking or central examinations, do not seem to significantly affect the efficiency of secondary schools.
... Some studies use regional borders as the instrumental variable for looking at the effect of an intervention (Bolli & Hof, 2018;West & Woessmann, 2010;Frölich & Lechner, 2010;Card & Krueger, 1994). Following Bolli and Hof (2018), we use the VET enrolment rates of the HE graduates' pre-study region (origin) at the time they were in their second year of lower-secondary education, when they had to decide their future education pathway. ...
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Higher education graduates with work experience enter the labour market more smoothly. This study analyses how work experience from vocational education and training (VET) affects labour market outcomes after higher education. To account for selection into VET, we use the regional enrolment rate as an instrument for upper-secondary VET. Results suggest that work experience gained during VET leads to significantly higher wages of 7% to 19% one year after graduation from higher education and two months less search time for first employment but does not significantly lower the probability of an internship in the post-graduation year. However, these positive effects do not persist: the effect is no longer robustly significant for wages, unemployment or employment position after five years. The effect operates through the human capital (specific and general), screening and signalling channels, not the social network channel. Our results suggest that upper-secondary VET is an equivalent pathway to academic education, not merely the second-best, for individuals planning on higher education.
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El presente artículo analiza las causas de las diferencias en resultados escolares entre centros educativos públicos y privados de América Latina. Para ello, se utiliza información de los 8 países latinoamericanos que participaron en PISA 2012. Las estimaciones de variables instrumentales en dos etapas, combinadas con la técnica de descomposición de Oaxaca-Blinder, revelan que Uruguay y Brasil presentaron la mayor brecha educativa, y Colombia y México la menor. Dichas divergencias fueron causadas, en mayor medida, por la componente observada del modelo. Específicamente, fueron las diferencias en las características individuales, los factores que originaron, en mayor proporción, las brechas en desempeño; seguidas de las características familiares y los recursos de los centros educativos. Además, la descomposición en la componente no observada sugiere que los estudiantes de los colegios privados hacen un mejor uso de los medios educativos que tienen en sus hogares, así como de los recursos de sus centros.
Article
El presente trabajo estudia la asociación entre el nivel de competencia al que están sometidos las escuelas y la calidad de su gestión, utilizando para ello una base de datos de corte transversal que incluye 1.800 centros educativos de ocho países distintos y cuya propiedad abarca desde administraciones públicas, cooperativas de enseñanza, fundaciones o empresas de capital riesgo, entre otros. El interés de esta investigación se pone de manifiesto ya que otros trabajos han demostrado que la calidad de la gestión de los centros educativos afecta directamente al rendimiento de los alumnos y por ende al desarrollo social. Los resultados obtenidos confirman la principal hipótesis de que la competencia se relaciona positivamente con la calidad de la gestión del centro. Si bien esta conclusión es relevante desde el punto de vista de la política educativa, es preciso tener en cuenta que la literatura ha mostrado posibles consecuencias negativas derivadas de la competencia entre centros, como son la tendencia hacia la segmentación de los centros y la creciente polarización de los mismos.
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This research uses predicted genetic diversity unadjusted for the ancestral composition of current populations, as a plausible source of exogenous variations for indicators of economic institutions. While genetic diversity has a robust, concave and significant effect on economic institutions, reduced-form regressions and numerous falsification tests ostensibly suggest that genetic diversity affects development only via indices of multidimensional measures of economic institutions. Second-stage results indicate that allowing for cognitive skills, latitude and ethno-diversity, economic institutions exert a positive and strongly statistically significant effect on development. These findings are robust to the inclusion of deep and proximate growth determinants, different measures of geography, institutions, and horse races between cognitive skills and economic freedom, as well as to the use of different estimators. Human capital, gauged by cognitive skills, in most specifications is not significant in the second stage; however, it is positive and a strong significant predictor of economic institutions in the first stage. The empirical evidence unveiled in this study lends credence to the primacy of economic institutions hypothesis to ignite long-term growth and highlights the crucial role of human capital in enhancing economic institutional quality.
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Modern schooling systems arose not only in response to the grassroots demand for marketable human capital but also as tools of political control and cultural influence. Such was arguably the case of the multiethnic Habsburg monarchy in the 19th century. I discuss the extent of the provision of schooling, considering a range of metrics including teachers, classrooms and the number of grades offered. Using the issue of the language of instruction as an example, I show that in spite of having the force of the law, the success of the public education policy depended on the active adoption of the policy by the citizenry and that this was often hampered by the cultural politics of the same policy-makers who designed the schooling system.
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Despite a growing emphasis in education policy on ‘what works for whom and in what circumstances’, there is still considerable attention to decontextualised ‘best practices’ that emerge from cross-country comparisons of student achievement. Also, while operational and even political aspects of context are increasingly incorporated into policy research, there is relatively little attention to the relationship between sociocultural context and education policy. In this paper, I explore the extent to which national sociocultural context influences the relationship between one aspect of policy – teacher accountability – and student outcomes. I do so by using multilevel modelling to analyse international survey data on education (from PISA 2012, PISA 2015, and TIMSS 2015) matched at the country level with survey data on culture (from the World Values Survey and Hofstede’s IBM study). I find that one of the sociocultural constructs significantly and consistently moderates the relationship between teacher accountability and student outcomes, suggesting that some teacher accountability approaches may be beneficial in certain sociocultural contexts but detrimental in others. This finding implies a need for caution in generating universal policy prescriptions from international assessments such as PISA and TIMSS. It also strengthens the case for viewing teacher accountability as a socioculturally embedded process.
Conference Paper
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El rendimiento escolar de los centros públicos y privados en Costa Rica: factores que determinaron la brecha escolar en PISA 2012. Resumen El trabajo utiliza la base PISA (2012) y la metodología de Oaxaca-Blinder y para constatar la existencia de diferencias significativas en rendimiento escolar entre alumnos costarricenses de colegios públicos y privados. Los alumnos de centros privados obtienen 36'5 puntos más en Matemáticas, 55'6 en Comprensión Lectora y 47'8 en Ciencias, una vez que se ha controlado por un amplio espectro de factores. El análisis pretende, además, explicar las causas de estas diferencias entre centros públicos y privados, teniendo en cuenta el efecto dotación de factores, el efecto aprovechamiento de las dotaciones y el efecto interacción. Se infiere que la mayor parte de las diferencias es explicada por el modelo planteado, esto es, obedecen a diferencias en dotaciones. En concreto, el principal factor de divergencia son las características del hogar, seguido de las diferencias en recursos entre centros educativos, las características del estudiante y el ambiente de trabajo de los centros. Además de en recursos, también se constatan diferencias en el aprovechamiento de dichos recursos que contribuyen a las diferencias en rendimiento. Descriptores: Educación pública y privada; descomposición Oaxaca-Blinder; PISA; funciones de producción educativa; resultados académicos. Abstract This paper uses data from PISA (2012) and the Oaxaca-Blinder methodology to identify differences in school performance between Costa Rican students of public and private schools. These differences are significant: students of private schools scores 36.5 points more in Math, 55.6 in Reading and 47.8 in Science, once we have controlled by a wide range of factors. The analysis also aims to explain the causes of these differences between public and private schools, considering an endowments effect, a coefficients effect and a interaction effect. Most of the differences are explained by the proposed model, that is, are caused by differences in endowments. Specifically, the main factor of divergence is the household characteristics, followed by the differences in resources between schools, the student characteristics and the work environment at schools. In addition to the resources themselves, the use of the resources is also an important factor explaining the differences in school performance.
Article
This paper examines the causal effects of Catholic school attendance on educational attainment. Using a novel instrumental-variable approach that exploits an exogenous shock to the US Catholic school system, we show that the positive correlation between Catholic school attendance and student outcomes is explained by selection bias. Spearheaded by the universal call to holiness, the reforms that occurred at the Second Vatican Council produced a dramatic exogenous change in the cost/benefit ratio of religious life in the Catholic Church. Using the abrupt decline in the number of Catholic sisters as an instrument for Catholic school attendance, we find no evidence of positive effects on student outcomes.
Article
Résumé Cet article vise à expliquer les motifs pour lesquels le Québec finance les écoles privées alors que la province voisine, l'Ontario, ne leur apporte aucune aide directe. L'auteure avance que ces politiques sont liées à la configuration religieuse des provinces au moment de l’établissement de leur système d’éducation. Au Québec, où la religion catholique était dominante, l'autorité de l'État sur l'éducation a été contestée jusqu'au milieu du 20 e siècle par l’Église catholique. En revanche, en Ontario, les églises protestantes, qui étaient majoritaires, ne sont pas opposées au développement des écoles publiques. L'État s'est alors rapidement imposé comme l'autorité suprême en matière d'éducation. Au 20 e siècle, les politiques des gouvernements des deux provinces ont été influencées par l'héritage des décisions prises un siècle plus tôt.
Technical Report
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La presente investigación se centra en el análisis de las diferencias en características y resultados académicos entre instituciones educativas de secundaria públicas y privadas. Para ello, utilizando información de la Megabase de Datos Georreferenciados de Centros Educativos de Costa Rica (2000-2011) –financiada por el Informe Estado de la Educación y el Consejo Nacional de Rectores (Conare)–, se comparan, en primer lugar, las dotaciones de factores o inputs necesarios para llevar a cabo el proceso educativo. Aunque las diferencias en factores como instalaciones y profesorado no son muy acusadas, se concluye que los centros privados ofrecen mejores dotaciones en una serie de inputs que pueden revertir en la calidad de la enseñanza impartida. En segundo lugar, se examinan las diferencias en output o resultados educativos, poniendo de manifiesto que los centros privados son más homogéneos y obtienen mejores resultados que los públicos, de acuerdo al porcentaje de aprobados, las tasas de repetición y abandono y las puntuaciones en pruebas internacionales de conocimiento.
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We provide a simple framework for interpreting instrumental variable regressions when there is a gap in time between the impact of the instrument and the measurement of the endogenous variable, highlighting a particular violation of the exclusion restriction that can arise in this setting. In the presence of this violation, conventional IV regressions do not consistently estimate a structural parameter of interest. Building on our framework, we develop a simple empirical method to estimate the long-run effect of the endogenous variable. We use our bias correction method to examine the role of institutions in economic development, following Acemoglu et al. (2001). We find long-run coefficients that are smaller than the coefficients from the existing literature, demonstrating the quantitative importance of our framework.
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Going beyond previous studies, we investigated differential effects of teacher self-efficacy (TSE) across the three basic dimensions of educational equality in student engagement, instructional strategies and classroom management in East and SouthEast Asian, Anglo-Saxon and Nordic country clusters in a cross-cultural analysis. It was found that all three domains of TSE show different patterns of associations in relation to teacher, classroom, principal and school predictors across the three country clusters. Most variation occurred within the classroom and principal predictors, whereas the teacher and school predictors were more homogeneously related to the three country clusters and the three domains of TSE. However, there were more similarities between the Nordic and Anglo-Saxon clusters than the East and SouthEast Asian clusters and any of the other two. Cultural values, as found in the GLOBE study and by Hofstede, were used as a cultural framework to interpret the differences occurring in the country clusters.
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We study whether independent-school competition involves a trade-off between pupil wellbeing and academic performance. To test this hypothesis, we analyse data covering pupils across the OECD, exploiting historical Catholic opposition to state schooling for exogenous variation in independent-school enrolment shares. We find that independent-school competition decreases pupil wellbeing but raises achievement and lowers educational costs. Our analysis and balancing tests indicate these findings are causal. In addition, we find several mechanisms behind the trade-off, including more traditional teaching and stronger parental achievement pressure.
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This paper provides a comprehensive ethical analysis on the research question 'Is it ethical to limit the maximum fee charged by the private schools in Pakistan'. The extent of the research is based on five ethical perspectives: Utilitarianism, Rights-based Ethics, Justice Theory of Ethics, Virtue Ethics, Ethics of Care. This paper illustrates that the utilitarian approach provides sufficient analysis to accept that it is unethical on behalf of private schools to keep increasing their fees and it is ethical on behalf of regulators and courts to put a limit on this brutality by private schools as the net costs of inequality, partiality, and social discrimination completely outweigh the net benefits of private schools. Moreover, the exploitation by private schools in terms of just focusing on their profits has actually violated the right to education of society.
Chapter
State and religion, two of the oldest institutions known to mankind, have historically had a complex relationship with each other. At times rulers have suppressed religion altogether, at others they have treated religion as independent of the state, and at still others they have preferred one religion over others or even endorsed one as the official religion. A survey of 177 countries in the year 2008 reveals a similar diversity of attitudes. There were 16 countries in the survey (9%) which exhibited a hostile attitude toward religion; 43 countries (24%) had a neutral attitude; 77 countries (44%) clearly favored certain religions; and 41 countries (23%) endorsed one or more religions as the official state religion.
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This research uses predicted genetic diversity unadjusted for the ancestral composition of current populations, as a plausible source of exogenous variations for indicators of economic institutions. While genetic diversity has a robust, concave and significant effect on economic institutions, reduced-form regressions and numerous falsification tests ostensibly suggest that genetic diversity affects development only via indices of multidimensional measures of economic institutions. Second-stage results indicate that allowing for cognitive skills, latitude and ethno-diversity, economic institutions exert a positive and strongly statistically significant effect on development. These findings are robust to the inclusion of deep and proximate growth determinants, different measures of geography, institutions, and horse races between cognitive skills and economic freedom, as well as to the use of different estimators. Human capital, gauged by cognitive skills, in most specifications is not significant in the second stage; however, it is positive and a strong significant predictor of economic institutions in the first stage. The empirical evidence unveiled in this study lends credence to the primacy of economic institutions hypothesis to ignite long-term growth and highlights the crucial role of human capital in enhancing economic institutional quality.
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This paper aims at estimating the effect of private vs. public education on pupils' achievement using the 2000 Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD) Program for International Student Assessment (PISA) survey and taking into account the potential bias due to the existence of unobserved confounding factors. To deal with these selection biases, three methods are implemented in a comparative perspective: (1) instrumental variable (IV) regression; (2) Heckman's two-stage approach and (3) propensity score matching. This exercise underlines important divergences between the results of parametric and non-parametric estimators. All results, however, show that private education does not generate systematic benefits.
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The effects of private schools on public elementary and secondary school achievement in Illinois are estimated. The percentage of students in private schools in a school district is treated as an endogenous variable in the achievement equation. Catholic religion is used to identify a two-stage model. It is shown that private schools have no direct effect on public school achievement.
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The effect of a Catholic grade school education on the test scores of non-Hispanic whites is examined. Particular attention is given to the issue of selection into the Catholic grade school sector. It is shown that eight years in a Catholic grade school is associated with higher vocabulary, mathematics, and reading test scores. No Catholic grade school effect is found on science test scores. Further, it is shown that there is not positive selection into the Catholic school sector. Thus, higher test scores cannot be attributed to selecting superior students. It is also shown that the positive Catholic schooling effect is driven by non-Catholics who attend Catholic grade schools. Once non-Catholics in Catholic schools are eliminated from the sample, the Catholic school effect becomes zero. Data from the third follow-up survey of the High School and Beyond 1980 Sophomore Cohort are used.
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Although extensive research has compared Catholic and public high schools, little is known about Catholic primary schools. Using unique data for two cohorts of primary school students, I find that Catholic schooling does not have a significant effect on mathematics and reading test scores. These findings do not change when school level test scores from the first-grade cohort are used to account for selection bias in the fourth-grade cohort. In fourth grade, Catholic schooling is associated with marginally fewer student absences than is public schooling.
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This article systematically reviews U.S. evidence from cross-sectional research on educational outcomes when schools must compete with each other. Competition typically is measured by using either the Herfindahl Index or the enrollment rate at an alternative school choice. Outcomes are academic test scores, graduation/attainment, expenditures/efficiency, teacher quality, students' post-school wages, and local housing prices. The sampling strategy identified more than 41 relevant empirical studies. A sizable majority report beneficial effects of competition, and many report statistically significant correlations. For each study, the effect size of an increase of competition by one standard deviation is reported. The positive gains from competition are modest in scope with respect to realistic changes in levels of competition. The review also notes several methodological challenges and recommends caution in reasoning from point estimates to public policy.
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Among 188 countries, 72 had no state religion in 2000,1970, and 1900; 58 had a state religion throughout; and 58 had 1 or 2 transitions. We use a Hotelling spatial competition model to analyze the likelihood that the religion market would be monopolized. Similar forces influence a government's decision to establish a state religion. Consistent with the model, the probability of state religion in 1970 and 2000 is increasing with the adherence rate to the main religion, has a nonlinear relation with population, and has little relation with per capita GDP. The probability of state religion decreases sharply under Communism, but lagged Communism has only a weak effect. With costly adjustment for institutions, the probability of state religion in 1970 or 2000 depends substantially on the status in 1900. This persistence is much stronger for countries with no major regime change than for countries with such a change.
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By anachronistically attributing the origin and growth of popular education entirely to state intervention, standard histories of state education have failed to delimit sufficiently the state’s role in educational development. This paper offers a theoretically based examination of the British state’s intervention in the emerging market for popular education in England during the nineteenth century. It complements conventional neoclassical analysis with recent developments from the fields of methodological individualism and “new institutional” economics to identify the specific reasons the state first became involved in mass education. The eventual national system of state-provided, free elementary schools, managed by local representative bodies and funded in part through local rates is reconceptualized as an imperfect solution to problems inherent in achieving an optimal level of schooling in the emerging mass market for education.
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This chapter will analyze the efficacy of the four types of systems discussed in the previous chapter—private operation with public funding, public operation with private funding, substantial private operation and funding, and purely public operation and funding—in terms of student outcomes. While substantial performance differences are detected between the different forms of systems, the chapter reveals that a simple division between public operation and funding on the one side, and private operation and funding on the other, does not seem to be fundamentally decisive for student performance. It demonstrates that the more intricate combination of public and private involvement in the two forms of public–private partnership seems to have important consequences for students’ educational performance. Also, while the advantages of cross-country evidence are highlighted in the chapter, it is not without its shortcomings; both the advantages and disadvantages are discussed here.
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Several previous studies have relied on religious affiliation and the proximity to Catholic schools as exogenous sources of variation for identifying the effect of Catholic schooling on a wide variety of outcomes. Using three separate approaches, we examine the validity of these instrumental variables. We find that none of the candidate instruments is a useful source of identification in currently available data sets. We also investigate the role of exclusion restrictions versus nonlinearity as the source of identification in bivariate probit models. The analysis may be useful as a template for the assessment of instrumental variables strategies in other applications. © 2005 by the Board of Regents of the University of Wisconsin System.
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This paper examines the origins of state educational systems in Europe in the nineteenth century and the institutionalization of mass education throughout the world in the twentieth century. We offer a theoretical interpretation of mass state-sponsored schooling that emphasizes the role of education in the nation-building efforts of states competing with one another within the European interstate system. We show that political, economic, and cultural developments in Europe led to a model of the legitimate national society that became highly institutionalized in the European (and later, world) cultural frame. This model made the construction of a mass educational system a major and indispensable component of every modern state's activity. We discuss the usefulness of this perspective for understanding recent cross-national studies of education.
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We exploit di®erences in early colonial experience to estimate the e®ect of institutions on economic performance. Our argument is that Europeans adopted very di®erent colonization policies in di®erent colonies, with di®erent associated institutions. The choice of colonization strategy was, at least in part, determined by the feasibility of whether Europeans could settle in the colony. In places where Europeans faced high mortality rates, they could not settle and they were more likely to set up worse (extractive) institutions. These early institutions persisted to the present. We document these hypotheses in the data. Exploiting di®erences in mortality rates faced by soldiers, bishops and sailors in the colonies during the 18th and 19th centuries as an instrument for current institutions, we estimate large e®ects of institutions on income per capita. Our estimates imply that a change from the worst (Zaire) to the best (US or New Zealand) institutions in our sample would be associated with a ¯ve fold increase in income per capita.
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We exploit differences in European mortality rates to estimate the effect of institutions on economic performance. Europeans adopted very different colonization policies in different colonies, with different associated institutions. In places where Europeans faced high mortality rates, they could not settle and were more likely to set up extractive institutions. These institutions persisted to the present. Exploiting differences in European mortality rates as an instrument for current institutions, we estimate large effects of institutions on income per capita. Once the effect of institutions is controlled for, countries in Africa or those closer to the equator do not have lower incomes. (JEL O11, P16, P51).
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Structural issues were once at the core of thinking on economic development policies. Development economists of the "old school" understood well the fundamental role that structural transformation played in the course of development. In their thinking, the movement of labour from traditional activities in agriculture and other primary sectors to "modern" industry was the key to raising the economy's saving and investment rates and to fostering economic growth. 1 The faster the rate at which labour would move from tra- ditional agriculture and low-productivity informal activities to the modern sector, the more rapid the rate of economic growth. Of course not all modern activities need to take place within manufac- turing industries. The expansion of non-traditional agriculture can play an important role in development (as it has notably in Chile). And the mod- ernization of traditional agriculture can be a significant source of productiv- ity gains (as with the green revolution). But historically rapid growth is asso- ciated first and foremost with the expansion of industrial activities. Economic globalization has greatly increased the premium on manufac- turing, particularly of the exportable kind. In recent decades rapidly grow- ing developing countries have been able to grow much faster than earlier antecedents (Britain during the industrial revolution, the United States dur- ing its catch-up with Britain in the late 19 th
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This book presents a view of what constitutes social justice in education, arguing that justice requires that all children have a real opportunity to become autonomous people, and that the state use a criterion of educational equality for deploying educational resources. Through systematic evaluation of empirical evidence, the book suggests that existing plans do not fare well against the criterion of social justice, yet this need not impugn school choice. The book offers a school choice proposal for implementing social justice and explains why other essential educational reforms can be compatible with choice. The nine chapters focus on: (1) "Liberal Theory and Education Policy"; (2) "The Case for Choice"; (3) "Three Red Herrings" (three unsuccessful arguments against school choice); (4) "The Case for Autonomy-Facilitating Education"; (5) "Objections to Autonomy-Facilitating Education"; (6) "The Case for Educational Equality"; (7) "Objections to Educational Equality"; (8) "Social Justice and Existing School Choice Programmes"; and (9) "School Choice for Social Justice?" (Contains 145 references and an index.) (SM)
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Arguments in favor of school choice depend on the idea that competition between schools improves the quality of education. However, we have almost no empirical evidence on whether competition actually affects school quality. In this study, I examine the effects of inter-school competition on public schools by using exogenous variation in the availability and costs of private school alternatives to public schools. Because low public school quality raises the demand for private schools as substitutes for public schools, we cannot simply compare public school students' outcomes in areas with and without substantial private school enrollment. Such simple comparisons confound the effect of greater private school competitiveness with the increased demand for private schools where the public schools are poor in quality. I derive instruments for private school competition from the fact that it is less expensive and difficult to set up religious schools, which accounts for 9 out of 10 private school students in the U.S., in areas densely populated by members of the affiliated religion. I find that greater private school competitiveness significantly raises the quality of public schools, as measured by the educational attainment, wages, and high school graduation rates of public school students. In addition, I find some evidence that public schools react to greater competitiveness of private schools by paying higher teacher salaries.
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This paper estimates the effects of family background, resources and institutions on mathematics and science performance using an international database of more than 260,000 students from 39 countries which includes extensive background information at the student, teacher, school and system level. The student-level estimations show that international differences in student performance cannot be attributed to resource differences but are considerably related to institutional differences. Among the many institutions which combine to yield major positive effects on student performance are centralized examinations and control mechanisms, school autonomy in personnel and process decisions, individual teacher influence over teaching methods, limits to teacher unions’ influence on curriculum scope, scrutiny of students’ achievement and competition from private schools.
Article
Max Weber attributed the higher economic prosperity of Protestant regions to a Protestant work ethic. We provide an alternative theory: Protestant economies prospered because instruction in reading the Bible generated the human capital crucial to economic prosperity. We test the theory using county-level data from late-nineteenth-century Prussia, exploiting the initial concentric dispersion of the Reformation to use distance to Wittenberg as an instrument for Protestantism. We find that Protestantism indeed led to higher economic prosperity, but also to better education. Our results are consistent with Protestants' higher literacy accounting for most of the gap in economic prosperity.
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A growing body of empirical research has provided provocative evidence that competition from private schools improves student achievement in neighboring public schools. However, this uniform conclusion has been based on fundamentally different empirical specifications. This study examines the importance of these different specifications by presenting new evidence on the relationship between public school quality and competition from private schools. This evidence is based on a unique data set that contains consistently defined high school graduation rates for the unified school districts in 18 states. The results indicate that empirical strategies which rely exclusively on ordinary least-squares (OLS) can lead to misleading inferences because of omitted variables bias and the simultaneous determination of the demand for private schools and public school quality. Nonetheless, two-stage least-squares (2SLS) estimates indicate that competition from private schools does have a positive and statistically significant impact on the high school graduation rates of neighboring public schools.
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Empirical studies estimating the effect of private school competition on student outcomes commonly use the share of Catholics in the local population as an instrument for private school competition. I show that this is not a valid instrument since it is endogenous to private school competition and suggest using instead the local share of Catholics in the population in 1890 and its squared term. These instruments are very strong and are also exogenous to both student achievements and private school competition. I further show that using the current Catholic share as an instrument results in seriously flawed estimates of the effect of private school competition on math test scores and on educational attainment, to the extent that significant positive effects of private school competition on these outcome measures do not hold when the historical Catholic share in 1890 is used as an alternative instrument. The historical Catholic share in 1890 can also be applied to estimate the treatment effect of Catholic schools.
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This paper investigates possible reasons for the disparity in results in the private school competition literature. In particular, the focus is on the data set, the grade range, and level of aggregation of the competition variable, and on the choice of OLS or IV estimation strategies. The results show that the size and significance of the competition variable depends on each of these attributes, although the grade range of the competition variable has a slightly smaller impact than the others. Private school competition does not have a consistently positive, significant effect on student achievement.
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Although extensive research has compared Catholic and public high schools, little is known about Catholic primary schools. Using unique data for two cohorts of primary school students, I find that Catholic schooling does not have a significant effect on mathematics and reading test scores. These findings do not change when school level test scores from the first-grade cohort are used to account for selection bias in the fourth-grade cohort. In fourth grade, Catholic schooling is associated with marginally fewer student absences than is public schooling.
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The paper suggests that international differences in educational institutions explain the large international differences in student performance in cognitive achievement tests. A microeconometric student-level estimation based on data for more than 260,000 students from 39 countries reveals that positive effects on student performance stem from centralized examinations and control mechanisms, school autonomy in personnel and process decisions, competition from private educational institutions, scrutiny of achievement, and teacher influence on teaching methods. A large influence of teacher unions on curriculum scope has negative effects on student performance. The findings imply that international differences in student performance are not caused by differences in schooling resources but are mainly due to differences in educational institutions.
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In the classic bestseller, Capitalism and Freedom, Milton Friedman presents his view of the proper role of competitive capitalism—the organization of economic activity through private enterprise operating in a free market—as both a device for achieving economic freedom and a necessary condition for political freedom. Beginning with a discussion of principles of a liberal society, Friedman applies them to such constantly pressing problems as monetary policy, discrimination, education, income distribution, welfare, and poverty. "Milton Friedman is one of the nation's outstanding economists, distinguished for remarkable analytical powers and technical virtuosity. He is unfailingly enlightening, independent, courageous, penetrating, and above all, stimulating."-Henry Hazlitt, Newsweek "It is a rare professor who greatly alters the thinking of his professional colleagues. It's an even rarer one who helps transform the world. Friedman has done both."-Stephen Chapman, Chicago Tribune
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Students face four decision margins: (a) How many years to spend in school, (b) What to study, (c) How much effort to devote to learning per year and (d) Whether to disrupt or assist the learning of classmates. The thousands of studies that have applied human capital theory to the first two questions are reviewed elsewhere in this volume and the Handbook series. This chapter reviews an emerging economic literature on the effects of and determinants of student effort and cooperativeness and how putting student motivation and behavior at center of one's theoretical framework changes one's view of how schools operate and how they might be made more effective. In this new framework students have a dual role. They are both (a) investors/consumers who choose which goals (outputs) to focus on and how much effort to put into each goal and (b) workers getting instruction and guidance from their first-line supervisors, the teachers. A simple model is presented in which the behavior of students, teachers and administrators depends on the incentives facing them and the actions of the other actors in the system. The incentives, in turn, depend upon the cost and reliability of the information (signals) that is generated about the various inputs and outputs of the system. Our review of empirical research support many of the predictions of the model.
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Production studies that have examined the relative performance of students in private and public schools typically find that the average student achievement in private schools exceeds that of the average student in public schools. The relatively small enrollment of students in private schools seriously limits policy predictions concerning the effects of vouchers and other policy reforms in the United States. The institutional arrangements for providing and funding schooling vary greatly across countries. This article examines these arrangements in five countries. Using a data set that measures achievement in mathematics, empirical results show that public funding and its subsequent effect of expanded enrollment in the private sector do not erase the superior performance of private schools relative to public ones. Government restrictions on private schools' decision-making powers can negate the superior performance of private schools. Copyright 1996 by the University of Chicago.
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This article examines the effect of Catholic secondary schooling on high school graduation rates, college graduation rates, and future wages. The article introduces new measures of access to Catholic schools that serve as potential instruments for Catholic school attendance. Catholic secondary schools are geographically concentrated in urban areas and Catholic schooling does increase educational attainment significantly among urban minorities. The gains from Catholic schooling are modest for urban whites and negligible for suburban students. Related analyses suggest that urban minorities benefit greatly from access to Catholic schooling primarily because the public schools available to them are quite poor. Copyright 1997 by University of Chicago Press.
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In this paper, we consider two measures of the relative effectiveness of public and Catholic schools: finishing high school and starting college. These measures are potentially more important indicators of school quality than standardized test scores in light of the economic consequences of obtaining more education. Single-equation estimates suggest that for the typical student, attending a Catholic high school raises the probability of finishing high school or entering a four-year college by thirteen percentage points. In bivariate probit models we find almost no evidence that our single-equation estimates are subject to selection bias.
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From the end of the second century CE, Judaism enforced a religious norm requiring fathers to educate their sons. We present evidence supporting our thesis that this change had a major influence on Jewish economic and demographic history. First, the high individual and community cost of educating children in subsistence farming economies (2nd to 7th centuries) prompted voluntary conversions of Jews that account for a share of the reduction from 4.5 to 1.2 million. Second, the Jewish farmers who invested in education gained the comparative advantage and incentive to enter skilled occupations during the urbanization in the Abbasid empire in the Near East (8th and 9th centuries) and they did select themselves into these occupations. Third, as merchants the Jews invested even more in education-a precondition for the mailing network and common court system that endowed them with trading skills demanded all over the world. Fourth, the Jews generated a voluntary diaspora within the Muslim Empire and later to Western Europe. Fifth, the majority of world Jewry lived in the Near East when the Mongol invasions in the 1250s brought this region back to a subsistence farming economy in which many Jews found it difficult to enforce the religious norm, and hence converted, as it had happened centuries earlier. (JEL: J1, J2, N3, O1, Z12, Z13) (c) 2007 by the European Economic Association.
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Several previous studies have relied on religious affiliation and the proximity to Catholic schools as exogenous sources of variation for identifying the effect of Catholic schooling on a wide variety of outcomes. Using three separate approaches, we examine the validity of these instrumental variables. We find that none of the candidate instruments is a useful source of identification in currently available data sets. We also investigate the role of exclusion restrictions versus nonlinearity as the source of identification in bivariate probit models. The analysis may be useful as a template for the assessment of instrumental variables strategies in other applications.
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Using data from the National Longitudinal Survey of Youth, this paper provides a detailed analysis of the effect of Catholic secondary schooling on high-school graduation rates and also examines Catholic schooling's effect on college graduation rates and future wages. The paper uses data from the National Catholic Educational Association and the Survey of Churches and Church Membership to construct measures of access to Catholic secondary schooling for each county in the United States. These measures of access provide potential instruments for Catholic school attendance. The results indicate that Catholic secondary schools are geographically concentrated in urban areas and that Catholic schooling greatly increases educational attainment among urban minorities. The gains from Catholic schooling are modest for urban whites and negligible for suburban whites. Related analyses suggest that urban minorities benefit greatly from access to Catholic schooling primarily because the public schools available to them are quite poor.
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Weak instruments arise when the instruments in linear instrumental variables (IV) regression are weakly correlated with the included endogenous variables. In generalized method of moments (GMM), more generally, weak instruments correspond to weak identification of some or all of the unknown parameters. Weak identification leads to GMM statistics with nonnormal distributions, even in large samples, so that conventional IV or GMM inferences are misleading. Fortunately, various procedures are now available for detecting and handling weak instruments in the linear IV model and, to a lesser degree, in nonlinear GMM.
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small probability that vouchers will, in the foreseeable future, be adopted on a large scale in any school district or state. At the moment, only three states have adopted publicly funded voucher programs, and all of these programs are limited in scale. Nonetheless, in recent years, over 40 state legislatures have considered proposals to provide some type of voucher program or tuition tax credit for at least some families in a given state or school district, and the Children's Scholarship Fund (see (http://www.scholarshipfund.org)) has helped create or expand privately funded voucher programs in numerous cities. As vouchers become a more significant part of education policy debates, the time is right to consider what we know and do not know about the likely effects of adopting various voucher schemes. In the balance of this paper, I describe both empirical and theoretical work on education that speaks to this topic. I argue that we cannot confidently predict the outcomes that would result from various voucher schemes, and I also stress that debates over vouchers per se are not informative. Details concerning funding, targeting and discretion in the use of vouchers should greatly affect the outcomes associated with any particular voucher program. Still, empirical evidence on the performance of public versus private schools as well as numerical results from existing simulation models suggest that policymakers should be able to design voucher programs that would be helpful to minority students in large cities. Public schools in large cities often perform poorly in minority neighborhoods, and this is especially true in economically disadvantaged areas.
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We exploit differences in European mortality rates to estimate the effect of institutions on economic performance. Europeans adopted very different colonization policies in different colonies, with different associated institutions. In places where Europeans faced high mortality rates, they could not settle and were more likely to set up extractive institutions. These institutions persisted to the present. Exploiting differences in European mortality rates as an instrument for current institutions, we estimate large effects of institutions on income per capita. Once the effect of institutions is controlled for, countries in Africa or those closer to the equator do not have lower incomes.