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Does a Military Draft Discourage Enrollment in Higher Education?

Katarina Keller (), Panu Poutvaara () and Andreas Wagener

FinanzArchiv: Public Finance Analysis, 2010, vol. 66, issue 2, 97-120

Abstract: Using data from 1960 to 2000 for OECD countries, we analyze the effect of compulsory military service on the demand for higher education, measured by the fraction of the working-age population enrolled in tertiary education. Based on a theoretical model, we hypothesize that a military draft has a negative effect on education. Empirically, we confirm this for the mere existence of conscription, albeit usually at low statistical significance. However, increasing intensity of its enforcement, measured by the share of the labor force conscripted by the military and the duration of service, significantly reduces enrollment in higher education.

Keywords: conscription; human capital (search for similar items in EconPapers)
JEL-codes: H56 I20 (search for similar items in EconPapers)
Date: 2010
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DOI: 10.1628/001522108X524160

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