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The Impact of Overeducation and its Measurement

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Abstract

The central focus of this article is the influence of the applied measure when the impact of overeducation is analyzed. For a database of Flemish school leavers, four alternative measures of overeducation are related to job satisfaction, mobility, training participation and wages. The magnitude and significance of the effects diverge between these measures. When attained education is controlled for, overeducated workers are less satisfied, more mobile, participate less in training and earn less than adequately educated workers. When required education is controlled for, no robust results are found for job satisfaction and training participation. Overeducated workers earn more than adequately educated colleagues, but have a higher turnover rate. We have little clear results with respect to undereducation. Caution is thus recommended for the interpretation of empirical results with respect to the impact of over- and undereducation.

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Correspondence to Dieter Verhaest.

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Verhaest, D., Omey, E. The Impact of Overeducation and its Measurement. Soc Indic Res 77, 419–448 (2006). https://doi.org/10.1007/s11205-005-4276-6

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Keywords

  • job satisfaction
  • measurement
  • mobility
  • overeducation
  • training
  • wages