September 2018

IZA Policy Paper No. 141: Risk-Sharing in Higher Education: A Policy Proposal

As concerns over growing levels of student loan debt continue to mount for both students and taxpayers, many have called for an improved accountability system in the U.S. higher education system. In this policy brief, I discuss the many flaws in our current system, and outline how a system known as “risk-sharing” could drastically improve incentives and outcomes. I present a framework for how risk-sharing could be structured, and illustrate the distributional impacts (both positive and negative) across the higher education landscape.