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Urban density and pupil attainment

Gibbons, Stephen and Silva, Olmo (2008) Urban density and pupil attainment. Journal of Urban Economics, 63 (2). pp. 631-650. ISSN 1095-9068

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Abstract

We explore the association between urban density and pupil attainment using three cohorts of pupils in schooling in England. Although—as widely recognised—attainment in dense urban places is low on average, this is not because urban environments disadvantage pupils, but because the most disadvantaged pupils with low average attainments attend the most urbanised schools. To control for this, we exploit changes in urban density faced by pupils during compulsory transition from Primary to Secondary school, and measure educational progress at the end of the Secondary phase, relative to attainment at the end of Primary schooling. Our results suggest that there are small but significant benefits from education in schools in more densely urbanised settings. We detect this density advantage even amongst pupils moving relatively short distances between Primary and Secondary schools within urban areas, so we cannot attribute it to broad urbanisation effects experienced by pupils making rural–urban school moves. A more likely explanation lies in greater school choice and competition between closely co-located educational providers.

Item Type: Article
Official URL: http://www.sciencedirect.com/science/journal/00941...
Additional Information: © 2007 Elsevier
Library of Congress subject classification: H Social Sciences > HB Economic Theory
L Education > L Education (General)
Journal of Economic Literature Classification System: I - Health, Education, and Welfare > I2 - Education > I20 - General
J - Labor and Demographic Economics > J2 - Time Allocation, Work Behavior, and Employment Determination and Creation; Human Capital; Retirement > J24 - Human Capital; Skills; Occupational Choice; Labor Productivity
R - Urban, Rural, and Regional Economics > R2 - Household Analysis > R20 - General
Sets: Collections > Economists Online
Research centres and groups > Centre for Economic Performance (CEP)
Departments > Geography and Environment
Rights: http://www.lse.ac.uk/library/usingTheLibrary/academicSupport/OA/depositYourResearch.aspx
Date Deposited: 06 Aug 2008 13:32
URL: http://eprints.lse.ac.uk/20479/

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