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Graduates in Engineering and Economics: Between Demand and Supply

Elena Varshavskaya and Elena Kotyrlo
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Educational Studies, 2019, issue 2, 98-128

Abstract: Elena Varshavskaya - Doctor of Sciences in Economics, Professor, Department of Human Resource Management, School of Business Administration, Faculty of Business and Management, National Research University Higher School of Economics. E-mail: evarshavskaya@hse.ruElena Kotyrlo - Doctor of Sciences in Economics, Associate Professor, Department of Applied Economics, Faculty of Economic Sciences, National Research University Higher School of Economics. E-mail: ekotyrlo@hse.ruAddress: 20 Myasnitskaya Str., 101000 Moscow, Russian Federation.Microdata from the National Employment Survey of 2010-2015 Vocational and University Graduates conducted by the Russian Federal State Statistics Service (Rosstat) in April-September 2016 is used to analyze the study-to-work transition of graduates in engineering and economics. Transition effectiveness is used to estimate the ratio of demand and supply of graduates" labor. Research methods include descriptive and regression analysis.Statistical analysis of macro data shows that the number of skilled engineers who obtained degrees in 1990-2000 exceeded the number of engineers exiting the labor force upon reaching the age of retirement during that period. While aggregate supply of engineering workforce was growing during the post-reform era, demand for their labor was shrinking―mostly due to a considerable decline in industrial jobs.It has been established that chances of getting a job, average time that it takes to find one, and the degree of first-job educational and skill match are pretty much the same for young qualified engineers and economists. No statistically significant difference has been observed between their starting salaries, either. Therefore, no evidence has been found to support the hypothesis about a high unmet demand for qualified engineers and surplus of workforce in economics and management. The study demonstrates that the reported shortage of engineers has nothing to do with low aggregate supply. Research findings could be used in the design of academic programs for higher education at national and regional scales.

Keywords: graduate labor market; study-to-work transition; labor demand and supply; shortage of engineers; surplus of economists (search for similar items in EconPapers)
Date: 2019
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