August 2017

IZA DP No. 10948: Public Opinion on Education Policy in Germany

forthcoming in: Martin R. West and Ludger Woessmann (eds.), Public Opinion and the Political Economy of Education Policy around the World, Cambridge, MA: MIT Press

To better understand the political economy constraints of education policy, we have conducted the annual ifo Education Survey in Germany since 2014. This paper summarizes selected key findings on the German publics' preferences for education policies ranging from early childhood education and schools to the apprenticeship system, universities, and lifelong learning. While the emerging picture is complex and multifaceted, some general patterns emerge. The majority of Germans is surprisingly open to education reform and favors clear performance orientation. Survey experiments indicate that information can have substantial effects on public policy preferences. Overall, education policies seem important for respondents' voting behavior.