Thomas Le Barbanchon, Diego Ubfal, Federico Araya, 16 December 2019

The decision whether to take up paid work alongside academic study is a difficult trade-off that students all over the world face. The benefits of additional income and work experience must be weighed up against the loss of hours devoted to formal study. This column exploits data from a work-study programme in Uruguay to explore the impacts of part-time employment on academic attainment and future professional success. Such programmes can represent valuable human capital investments, but their details are crucial to ensuring long-run positive impacts for young people.

Michael Roach, Henry Sauermann, John D. Skrentny, 24 November 2019

The propensity of foreign STEM talent to found or join startups in the US is widely recognised but little understood. Using unique longitudinal data from over 5,600 STEM PhDs, this column reveals that during graduate school, foreign students exhibit more entrepreneurial personality traits and career preferences than their native peers. After graduation, however, they are less likely to found companies or work in startups. These results suggest that US immigration policies may deter newly minted PhDs from participating in entrepreneurship.

Arun Advani, Rachel Griffith, Sarah Smith, 16 October 2019

The Royal Economic Society has launched Discover Economics, an ambitious three-year campaign to attract more women, minority students and students from state schools to study the subject. Sarah Smith and Arun Advani, co-chairs of the campaign, plus Rachel Griffith, RES president, tell Tim Phillips about how they plan to make this happen.

Arun Advani, Rachel Griffith, Sarah Smith, 15 October 2019

The future of UK economics is looking predominantly male and disproportionately privately educated. This column introduces #DiscoverEconomics – a campaign to increase diversity in economics led by the Royal Economic Society and with the support of a wide range of institutions involved in economic research, communication and policymaking, including the Bank of England, the Government Economic Service, the Society of Professional Economists and many leading research institutions. The campaign aims to attract more women, ethnic minority students, and students from state schools and colleges to study the subject at university. 

Dong Lou, 19 July 2018

Superstar firms like Facebook and Tesla make a substantial difference to overall industry productivity. In his research, Dong Lou asks whether they also impact students’ choices of degree majors. Using data on students' college major choices and the stock returns and media coverage of relevant companies in the US, he shows that firm performance had a positive effect on encouraging students to choose relevant majors. But the relevant labour demand in those industries has not risen accordingly, which has depressed wages.

Justin Cook, Jason Fletcher, 17 September 2017

While diversity can lead to more innovation and better problem solving, it can also cause competition and conflict. This column examines the effect of genetic diversity among high school students in Wisconsin on their socioeconomic outcomes later in life. Genetic diversity is associated with more years of schooling, and higher job prestige and income. Students from more genetically diverse schools score higher on indexes of openness and extraversion.

Jeffrey DeSimone, 30 May 2010

It is commonly acknowledged that heavy alcohol consumers are more likely to be having sex. This column examines carefully the causal link from drinking to sex on US college campuses. After accounting for other potential co-determinants, the evidence suggests that binge drinking is unlikely to be the trigger for sexual activity, but might lead to more promiscuous sex than would otherwise take place, putting students at risk of unsafe sex.

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