Social and Economic Implications of Skill and Educational Mismatch

A special issue of Social Sciences (ISSN 2076-0760). This special issue belongs to the section "Social Stratification and Inequality".

Deadline for manuscript submissions: closed (30 June 2021) | Viewed by 33963

Special Issue Editor


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Guest Editor
School of Education, University of Glasgow, Scotland, UK
Interests: educational inequalities; social stratification

Special Issue Information

Dear colleagues,

This Special Issue of Social Sciences aims at bringing together the latest social scientific thinking and evidence on the relationship between skill and/or educational mismatch and social and economic outcomes. We strongly encourage submissions providing empirical evidence for countries in the Global South, and especially welcome empirical work discussing the policy implications of the results presented.

Educational expansion across countries has increased competition among workers, making educational qualifications a less powerful signal of the knowledge and skills people can bring into jobs. Workers holding the same educational credential might bring a different set of skills relevant for work that formal qualifications can hardly show at a first glance. This has made the measurement of skills –level and type - a key issue for academic and policy studies.

Even if the ongoing trend towards educational expansion in high-, middle- and low-income countries contributes to social and economic development, in many countries the supply of qualified and skilled workers has moved to a faster pace than its demand. This mismatch between the supply and demand of workers has led to undesired situations such as overqualification or skill shortages.

While many countries have witnessed a weakening in the relationship between social background and educational opportunities and outcomes, the subsequent transition from education to the labour market is still highly influenced by other factors beyond the qualifications and knowledge gained in formal education. Therefore, there is an urge for better understanding the social and economic inequalities resulting from skill and educational mismatch in the labour market across sociodemographic groups and countries.

We welcome abstracts of no more than 300 words by 30 November 2020. Notification of acceptance will be provided by 30 December 2020. Final papers are due on 30 June 2021 for peer review.

Dr. Queralt Capsada-Munsech
Guest Editor

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Keywords

  • skill mismatch
  • skills measurement
  • cognitive and non-cognitive skills
  • educational mismatch
  • social inequality
  • gender
  • ‘race’ and ethnicity
  • immigration status
  • job security
  • wage returns

Published Papers (8 papers)

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Research

36 pages, 1861 KiB  
Article
Trends in Educational and Skill Mismatch in the United States
by Dong-Hoon Shin and David Bills
Soc. Sci. 2021, 10(10), 395; https://doi.org/10.3390/socsci10100395 - 15 Oct 2021
Cited by 2 | Viewed by 3856
Abstract
We examined trends in the incidence and correlates of educational and skill mismatch in the United States. We focused on trends over time in the associations between various types of mismatch and a range of factors including contextual conditions. We explored whether contextual [...] Read more.
We examined trends in the incidence and correlates of educational and skill mismatch in the United States. We focused on trends over time in the associations between various types of mismatch and a range of factors including contextual conditions. We explored whether contextual conditions at the transitional period from school to jobs increase or decrease the probability of mismatch and whether such relationships persist throughout the working career. Our central questions were how the incidence of and relationship between educational and skill mismatch in the U.S. changed between 1994, 2003, and 2012 and how this differed by age, gender, immigration status, educational attainment, and occupation. We used three cross-sectional surveys that had not previously been implemented for such an effort. These were the International Adult Literacy Survey (IALS) in 1994, the Adult Literacy and Life-skills (ALL) survey in 2003, and the Program for the International Assessment of Adult Competencies (PIAAC) in 2012. Repeated cross-sectional data provided us with substantial analytic leverage. Our findings point toward the key role of occupational or positional factors rather than individual worker characteristics as being most implicated in trends in mismatch. We describe the importance of our results for labor market theories. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Social and Economic Implications of Skill and Educational Mismatch)
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19 pages, 309 KiB  
Article
Mismatched, but Not Aware of It? How Subjective and Objective Skill Mismatch Affects Employee Job Satisfaction
by Stephan Bischof
Soc. Sci. 2021, 10(10), 389; https://doi.org/10.3390/socsci10100389 - 14 Oct 2021
Cited by 1 | Viewed by 4749
Abstract
Several studies suggest that skill mismatch reduces job satisfaction. To date, research has primarily investigated the impact of subjective skill mismatch; the impact of objective skill mismatch has less commonly been analysed and has generally only focused on mismatches in single skills. The [...] Read more.
Several studies suggest that skill mismatch reduces job satisfaction. To date, research has primarily investigated the impact of subjective skill mismatch; the impact of objective skill mismatch has less commonly been analysed and has generally only focused on mismatches in single skills. The present study addresses the question of whether both subjective and objective skill mismatch reduces employee job satisfaction. This article contributes to previous research by disentangling the effects of objective and subjective skill mismatch on job satisfaction based on a multidimensional measure of objective skill mismatch among employees in Germany. Based on the 2018 wave of the German National Educational Panel Study (NEPS) Adult Cohort, multiple linear regression models are herein estimated in order to investigate how subjective and objective skill mismatches affect people’s job satisfaction. The findings indicate that subjectively skill mismatched employees are less satisfied with their job than matched employees to a statistically significant degree, even when controlling for the objective mismatch. However, objectively skill mismatched employees do not show statistically significant lower job satisfaction compared to matched employees. Although there is considerable dissonance between objective mismatches and the subjective perception of being mismatched, the findings suggest that skill mismatch only reduces job satisfaction when employees perceive themselves to be mismatched. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Social and Economic Implications of Skill and Educational Mismatch)
24 pages, 2540 KiB  
Article
Patterns and Persistence of Educational Mismatch: A Trajectory Approach Using Chilean Panel Data
by María Paola Sevilla, Mauricio Farías and Daniela Luengo-Aravena
Soc. Sci. 2021, 10(9), 333; https://doi.org/10.3390/socsci10090333 - 7 Sep 2021
Cited by 3 | Viewed by 3770
Abstract
The misalignment between workers’ educational levels and the educational level typically required for their occupations, namely educational mismatch, has become widespread. However, despite its potential costs, there is little evidence of this situation in developing countries. Using longitudinal and retrospective data of employment [...] Read more.
The misalignment between workers’ educational levels and the educational level typically required for their occupations, namely educational mismatch, has become widespread. However, despite its potential costs, there is little evidence of this situation in developing countries. Using longitudinal and retrospective data of employment histories between 2009 and 2019, this paper conducts sequence analysis to construct a typology of educational mismatch trajectories among Chilean workers. We demonstrate that mismatch is a prevalent and persistent phenomenon. Once people enter the labor market, either as undereducated or overeducated workers, they tend to stay in such positions for extended periods of time. Moreover, we find significant wage penalties for workers in a mismatch situation. Results indicate that females and young, less-educated men are more prone to follow trajectories with longer periods of mismatch or unemployment. New avenues for research and the need for public policies looking at these phenomena are required to avoid people’s dissatisfaction due to a possible false promise that more education can improve their life standards. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Social and Economic Implications of Skill and Educational Mismatch)
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15 pages, 299 KiB  
Article
Qualification (Mis)Match for Upper Secondary and Higher Education
by Mariya Neycheva
Soc. Sci. 2021, 10(9), 327; https://doi.org/10.3390/socsci10090327 - 30 Aug 2021
Cited by 1 | Viewed by 2392
Abstract
The expansion of education all over the world is expected to improve economic and social development. However, the oversupply of educated labor force might bring unfavorable consequences for the labor market and long-run growth prospects. In this regard the purpose of this paper [...] Read more.
The expansion of education all over the world is expected to improve economic and social development. However, the oversupply of educated labor force might bring unfavorable consequences for the labor market and long-run growth prospects. In this regard the purpose of this paper is two-fold. First, it aims at summarizing the main channels and mechanisms through which education–job mismatch could impact the changes of per capita income. Second, the study presents empirical evidence on that impact by differentiating between qualification mismatch among workers having completed tertiary education and those with upper secondary education. The sample comprises the EU member countries between 2000 and 2019. The results suggest that whereas the higher percentage of the properly matched labor force increases the steady-state level of per capita output for both educational levels being considered, the effect of qualification mismatch is either negative or insignificant. There is some evidence that overeducation among higher education graduates exhibits a stronger negative effect on economic activity in comparison with overeducation among workers with upper secondary education. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Social and Economic Implications of Skill and Educational Mismatch)
32 pages, 3818 KiB  
Article
Same Degree, Same Opportunities? Educational and Social Background Effects on Overeducation in Germany
by Ana Santiago Vela
Soc. Sci. 2021, 10(8), 315; https://doi.org/10.3390/socsci10080315 - 20 Aug 2021
Cited by 5 | Viewed by 5274
Abstract
Overeducation is indicative of a suboptimal education–job match and is related to several negative consequences for workers. Despite extensive research explaining the overeducation phenomenon, previous studies have not simultaneously analyzed educational background (i.e., educational degrees) and social background effects, or have failed to [...] Read more.
Overeducation is indicative of a suboptimal education–job match and is related to several negative consequences for workers. Despite extensive research explaining the overeducation phenomenon, previous studies have not simultaneously analyzed educational background (i.e., educational degrees) and social background effects, or have failed to consider both the vertical and horizontal dimension that educational degrees entail (i.e., level and field). This article seeks to overcome these limitations by examining whether overeducation varies (1) across educational background (considering both level and field of educational degrees), (2) across social background, and (3) by social background among workers with the same degree. Based on the German BIBB/BAuA Employment Survey 2018, results suggest that highly educated workers are more likely to be overeducated for the jobs they hold, implying the supply of this workforce exceeds the available adequate jobs on the German labor market. The field of education determines the risk of overeducation as well, with some occupationally specific fields of education (IT, natural sciences, and health) making for lower overeducation risk for both vocational and academic education. The results also indicate social background directly influences education–job matches (controlling for level and field of education), i.e., a social gap in overeducation. This evidence suggests an effect of social background on job allocation processes, beyond the effect of education, so that the offspring of privileged classes (i.e., high salariat) use the same degrees on the labor market more profitably than the offspring of less privileged classes. Given the low attention paid to education–job matches in social stratification analyses, the present article makes a noteworthy contribution to the literature on social stratification and inequality. In addition, the present research will serve as a base for future studies on overeducation including both the vertical and horizontal dimension of educational degrees. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Social and Economic Implications of Skill and Educational Mismatch)
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18 pages, 334 KiB  
Article
The Fragile Axes of Life: A Capability Approach Perspective towards Graduates’ Education–Job Mismatches and Subjective Well-Being
by Petya Ilieva-Trichkova and Pepka Boyadjieva
Soc. Sci. 2021, 10(7), 262; https://doi.org/10.3390/socsci10070262 - 8 Jul 2021
Cited by 1 | Viewed by 3704
Abstract
Using the capability approach as a theoretical framework, this article aims to: (1) explore how subjective individual well-being differs among higher education graduates and especially to what extent it is associated with graduates’ vertical education–job mismatches; (2) reveal the embeddedness of the link [...] Read more.
Using the capability approach as a theoretical framework, this article aims to: (1) explore how subjective individual well-being differs among higher education graduates and especially to what extent it is associated with graduates’ vertical education–job mismatches; (2) reveal the embeddedness of the link between graduates’ vertical education–job mismatches and subjective well-being in different socio-economic contexts; and (3) outline some policy implications of the analysis undertaken. It argues that vertical education–job mismatch among graduates has an important influence on experiences of the benefits that come from higher education. By analysing micro-level data from the European Social Survey, carried out in 2012 and macro-level data for 24 European countries via descriptive statistics and multilevel regression, the study shows that education–job mismatch is associated with capability deprivation, as graduates who are vertically mismatched have less interest in what they are doing, feel less autonomous and competent, and are less confident that they are leading a meaningful life or being treated with respect by others in comparison to those graduates who are employed in jobs which correspond to their level of education. The article also provides evidence that the association between graduates’ education–job mismatches and individual subjective well-being is embedded in different socio-economic contexts. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Social and Economic Implications of Skill and Educational Mismatch)
19 pages, 1260 KiB  
Article
Meeting in the Middle: TVET Programs’ Education–Employment Linkage at Different Stages of Development
by Katherine M. Caves, Andrea Ghisletta, Johanna Mirka Kemper, Patrick McDonald and Ursula Renold
Soc. Sci. 2021, 10(6), 220; https://doi.org/10.3390/socsci10060220 - 9 Jun 2021
Cited by 6 | Viewed by 4541
Abstract
Technical and vocational education and training (TVET) programs are most successful at supporting youth labor markets when they combine education and employment. Education–employment linkage theory describes this combination in terms of power-sharing between actors from the education system and their counterparts in the [...] Read more.
Technical and vocational education and training (TVET) programs are most successful at supporting youth labor markets when they combine education and employment. Education–employment linkage theory describes this combination in terms of power-sharing between actors from the education system and their counterparts in the employment system over key processes in the curriculum value chain of curriculum design, curriculum application (program delivery), and curriculum updating. The Education–Employment Linkage Index measures linkage for every function in a TVET program where actors from the two systems interact, aggregating those into processes and phases and eventually an index score. We apply this index to the largest upper-secondary TVET programs in Benin, Chile, Costa Rica, and Nepal. We find that Benin has relatively high education–employment linkage, while the other three countries score very low. Benin’s situation is unique because its TVET program is moving from employer-led to linked, rather than the typical employer integration into an education-based program. Other countries with large informal economies, low formal education and training rates, and existing non-formal employer-led training may be able to implement similar approaches. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Social and Economic Implications of Skill and Educational Mismatch)
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33 pages, 2024 KiB  
Article
Demographics of Sudanese University Students in Relation to Regional Conflict and Underdevelopment
by Monira Hamid, Christopher Thron and Sallam Fageeri
Soc. Sci. 2021, 10(3), 89; https://doi.org/10.3390/socsci10030089 - 3 Mar 2021
Cited by 2 | Viewed by 3989
Abstract
This research examines regional differences in higher education participation rates in Sudan, and their relations with socioeconomic factors related to development, such as human development index (HDI), women’s status, urban/rural, and source of income. We pay special attention to areas of Sudan where [...] Read more.
This research examines regional differences in higher education participation rates in Sudan, and their relations with socioeconomic factors related to development, such as human development index (HDI), women’s status, urban/rural, and source of income. We pay special attention to areas of Sudan where long-running conflicts exist. Two datasets are used: the 2009 National Baseline Household Survey, conducted by Sudan’s Central Bureau of Statistics; and 2016–2017 matriculating students’ data, obtained from Sudan’s Ministry of Education. Regression analysis of the household survey data shows that the most significant factors associated with university attendance are having electricity at home, having a mother who has completed primary education, and being from a non-conflict region. University entrance data shows that young adults from conflict regions lag markedly behind the rest of Sudan in entering students’ academic level. Educational resources in Sudan are densely concentrated in the capital Khartoum, and higher-performing students (especially males) from all regions tend to enroll in universities in Khartoum. Regional universities’ student bodies consist largely of lower-performing students from the same region, especially in conflict regions. Women’s participation in higher education is robust, and women bachelor’s students outnumber men. Our analysis suggests that the following policies could be most effective in improving regional higher education enrollment rates and outcomes: (1) improve infrastructure (electric power in particular) in underserved regions; (2) provide widespread primary education for women; (3) put additional resources into regional universities, to encourage geographical diversity and to better serve women in underdeveloped regions. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Social and Economic Implications of Skill and Educational Mismatch)
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