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Structural change and the income of nations

Francisco Beltrán Tapia (), Alfonso Díez-Minguela (), Alicia Gómez-Tello (), Julio Martinez-Galarraga () and Daniel Tirado-Fabregat ()
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Alfonso Díez-Minguela: Universitat de València
Alicia Gómez-Tello: Universitat de València
Julio Martinez-Galarraga: Universitat de Barcelona

No 2021/414, UB Economics Working Papers from Universitat de Barcelona, Facultat d'Economia i Empresa, UB School of Economics

Abstract: This paper studies the impact generated by the existence of a mismatch between the language of instruction and the language of use of the population in the context of the construction of the liberal state in Spain. In particular, the work analyzes the effects of the presence of this linguistic distance on the unequal diffusion of literacy among the municipalities that made up the former Kingdom of Valencia from 1860 to 1930. For the development of the analysis, a novel data set has been constructed with information that includes the literacy rates of the 524 municipalities that make up the region of Valencia (Valencian Community) in three points in time (1860, 1900 and 1930), the linguistic domain to which each municipality belongs, as well as the institutional, geographic and economic characteristics of each municipality at the end of the Ancien Régime (1787). Based on the available information, the analysis uses Propensity Score Matching techniques to verify the existence of an effect on the literacy levels recorded in Spanish-speaking municipalities with respect to Catalan-speaking ones. Two main results are obtained. The first is to identify the existence of differences in educational outcomes derived from the presence of a mismatch effect. Secondly, it is also shown that this effect only appears when the Spanish state enjoyed the capacity to force compliance with language regulations in public schools, in parallel with the advance of its financial and administrative capacity and the incipient advance of a democratic regime.

Keywords: Language mismatch; literacy; regional inequality; economic history; Valencia. (search for similar items in EconPapers)
JEL-codes: I28 J24 N33 N43 O17 (search for similar items in EconPapers)
Pages: 41 pages
Date: 2021
New Economics Papers: this item is included in nep-cwa and nep-his
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