Edited by Geraint Johnes and Jill Johnes
Chapter 18: Education and Housing
William H. Hoyt 1 Introduction There is an enormous literature, surveyed in this volume by Naylor and Smith (Chapter 11) and by Bradley and Taylor (Chapter 10) that examines links between educational inputs (expenditures, measures of stafﬁng, demographic characteristics of students) and educational outcomes such as test scores, graduate rates and earnings. While undoubtedly these ‘outputs’ are related to the value of education, that is, how much households are willing to pay for various educational attributes, they are not, in themselves, measures of the value of educational inputs and therefore do not provide sufﬁcient information to address normative issues regarding educational provision. Speciﬁcally, without knowledge of how educational outcomes are valued, it would seem to be impossible to address the question of whether public education is efﬁciently provided. One explanation for the absence of measures of the value of educational outputs, offered by Samuelson (1954), is that the absence of a market for publicly provided goods meant that demands for these goods would not be revealed, making the determination of the efﬁcient provision of them difﬁcult, if not impossible. This argument, at least as made by Samuelson, applied to pure public goods, but would seemingly apply to goods such as publicly provided primary and secondary education which, while not pure public goods, share both the non-excludability and equal provision characteristics, though non-excludability in the case of education is a result of legislative ﬁat and not inherent in the nature of the good itself. Then...
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