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Science and Engineering Careers in the United StatesAn Analysis of Markets and Employment$
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Richard B. Freeman and Daniel L. Goroff

Print publication date: 2009

Print ISBN-13: 9780226261898

Published to Chicago Scholarship Online: February 2013

DOI: 10.7208/chicago/9780226261904.001.0001

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Educational Mismatch among Ph.D.s

Educational Mismatch among Ph.D.s

Determinants and Consequences

(p.229) 7 Educational Mismatch among Ph.D.s
Science and Engineering Careers in the United States

Keith A. Bender

John S. Heywood

University of Chicago Press

This chapter examines the consequences of job mismatch—lack of fit between education and jobs—among the most highly-educated workers in the economy. These workers of the knowledge economy are often thought to be critical for technological progress and growth. The evidence assembled here uses three related measures of mismatch from the Survey of Doctoral Recipients and estimates their influence on three job outcomes: earnings, job satisfaction, and turnover. Mismatch is associated with worse outcomes: lower wages, lower job satisfaction, and higher turnover. This persists across substantial variations in estimation and holds for academics and nonacademics and for men and women. The size of these influences is surprisingly large, including a double-digit reduction in earnings, a 20 percent increase in the likelihood of being dissatisfied, and a one-third increase in the turnover rate. The chapter attempts to estimate the determinants of mismatch and suggests that there may be substantial vintage effects at work as the fields in which the knowledge base changes most quickly appear to be associated with a greater chance of being mismatched.

Keywords:   sciences, engineering, United States, job mismatch, educational mismatch, doctoral education

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