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A researcher's guide to the Swedish compulsory school reform

Holmlund, Helena (2008) A researcher's guide to the Swedish compulsory school reform. CEEDP, 87. Centre for the Economics of Education, London School of Economics and Political Science, London, UK. ISBN 9780853281948

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Abstract

When studying different types of returns to education, educational reforms are commonly used in the economics literature as a source of exogenous variation in education. The Swedish compulsory school reform is one example; the reform extended compulsory education throughout the country, in different municipalities at different points in time. Such variation across cohorts and regions can be used in a differences-in-differences framework, in order to estimate causal effects of education. This paper provides a guide to researchers who consider using the Swedish reform in an empirical analysis: I present a description and background of the reform, provide some baseline results, a reliability analysis of the reform coding, a discussion of whether the reform is a valid instrument, and comment on the interpretation of IV estimates of returns to schooling. The main conclusions are the following: i) a reliability analysis of the reform coding finds a lower bound reliability estimate of 0.66-0.91; ii) the reform indeed raised educational attainment, more so for boys than for girls, and iii) with careful consideration of region-specific trends, the reform can be considered a valid instrument for education.

Item Type: Monograph (Discussion Paper)
Official URL: http://cee.lse.ac.uk
Additional Information: © 2008 Helena Holmlund
Library of Congress subject classification: L Education > L Education (General)
Journal of Economic Literature Classification System: I - Health, Education, and Welfare > I2 - Education
Sets: Research centres and groups > Centre for the Economics of Education (CEE)
Collections > Economists Online
Research centres and groups > Centre for Economic Performance (CEP)
Rights: http://www.lse.ac.uk/library/usingTheLibrary/academicSupport/OA/depositYourResearch.aspx
Identification Number: 87
Date Deposited: 14 Jul 2008 14:34
URL: http://eprints.lse.ac.uk/19382/

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