Library Header Image
LSE Research Online LSE Library Services

An historical analysis of the expansion of compulsory schooling in Europe after the Second World War

Viarengo, Martina (2007) An historical analysis of the expansion of compulsory schooling in Europe after the Second World War. Economic History Working Papers (97/07). Department of Economic History, London School of Economics and Political Science, London, UK.

Download (772kB) | Preview


From 1945 to 1975, fifteen Western European countries passed school-leaving age laws that raised the number of years of compulsory schooling for the first time after the Second World War. In order to understand the driving forces behind the increase in compulsory schooling and to explain the timing of this expansion, several areas of research have been reviewed. Economic, political economy and institutional hypotheses have been formulated to explain the passage of the legislation. The results of the estimation of the Cox proportional hazard model are in favour of the modernization theory when the overall period is considered. The ‘role of the state’ theory performs better until 1970 whereas after the Golden Age, technology and openness appear to be the most important determinants of the expansion of compulsory schooling. Surprisingly, there is no evidence of “contagion effect” in the law’s passage.

Item Type: Monograph (Working Paper)
Official URL:
Additional Information: © 2007 Martina Viarengo
Divisions: Economic History
Centre for Economic Performance
Subjects: L Education > LA History of education
H Social Sciences > HC Economic History and Conditions
H Social Sciences > H Social Sciences (General)
D History General and Old World > D History (General) > D839 Post-war History, 1945 on
Sets: Departments > Economic History
Collections > Economists Online
Research centres and groups > Centre for Economic Performance (CEP)
Date Deposited: 15 Apr 2008 09:34
Last Modified: 23 Nov 2020 00:08

Actions (login required)

View Item View Item


Downloads per month over past year

View more statistics