November 2013

IZA DP No. 7754: Does Higher Education Enhance Migration?

published as "More Educated, More Mobile? Evidence from Post-secondary Education Reform" in: Spatial Economic Analysis, 2017, 12 (1), 8-26

This paper examines the causal impact of education on within-country migration. A major higher education reform took place in Finland in the 1990s. It gradually transformed former vocational colleges into polytechnics and expanded higher education to all regions. The reform created exogenous variation in the regional supply of higher education. Using the reform as an instrument, our estimation results show that polytechnic graduates have a 7.5 (13.7) percentage points higher migration probability during a three-year (six-year) follow-up period than vocational college graduates.