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Conscription and the Returns to Education: Evidence from a Regression Discontinuity

Pierre Mouganie

Scandinavian Journal of Economics, 2020, vol. 122, issue 3, 1112-1139

Abstract: In 1997, the French government put into effect a law that permanently exempted young French men born after 1 January 1979 from mandatory military service. This paper uses a regression discontinuity design to identify the effect of peacetime conscription policies on education and labor market outcomes. Results indicate that conscription eligibility induces a significant increase in years of education but has no effect on employment and wages at the ages of 30–36. Further analysis shows that the interpretation most consistent with findings is that the average marginal return to the additional schooling induced by conscription is low.

Date: 2020
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Working Paper: Conscription and the returns to education: Evidence from a regression discontinuity (2015) Downloads
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