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Ludger Woessmann and Eric Bettinger

New Directions in the Economics of Higher Education provides an overview of the vibrant and growing field of the economics of higher education. The text assesses the full breadth of the topic, including the returns to higher education, college attendance and completion, higher education financing, educational production, and the market for higher education. This comprehensive literature review puts the collected papers into the perspective of developments in the wider literature on the economics of higher education over the past decade.
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Ludger Woessmann and Eric Bettinger

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Ludger Woessmann and Eric Bettinger

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Eric A. Hanushek and Ludger Woessmann

The simple perspective in this analysis is that the long-run economic outcomes for countries are directly related to the skills of society. And, enhanced economic mobility and improved distribution of income depend crucially on the level and distribution of skills. The primary impact comes from the relationship of skills to economic growth, although it is important to measure skills appropriately. When skills are measured in terms of knowledge capital – the aggregate cognitive skills of the population – the importance of high-quality schooling becomes clear. In order to provide direct evidence of the importance of knowledge capital, this chapter projects the economic benefits of an overall increase in achievement and of a move towards universal basic skills. The results of these projections show dramatically the dependence of the economy on the improvement of schools.

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Eric A. Hanushek and Ludger Woessmann