GRM 2010 GRM 2011

Abstract Details

Family Name:
First Name:
Title of Paper:
Inequality of education in the arab world : an empirical investigation from Gulf and no Gulf countries
Paper Proposal Text :
If the studies carried on income inequality are abundant (UNDP, 2002, Adams and Page, 2003; Benar , 2007, Page 2007; UNDP, 2009a; Nabli and Bibi , 2010), to our knowledge, no work has been forced to analyze the dynamics of these inequalities in the field of education in the Arab region. However, separate studies have attempted to analyze the distribution of education in some countries, but they did it in a superficial way. (Trabelsi et al, 2011 in Turkey. Krichen et al, 2012.). Indeed, this work differs from others in that it mobilizes the most recent data of Barro and Lee (2010) and the most appropriate tools of panel data econometrics. Since the countries of our region are not a homogeneous group, and in order to study the different growth trajectories, we divided our sample into two groups: the group of high-income countries (Gulf countries) and the group of middle income countries.
Thus, the objective of this paper is to explore the unequal dimension of education, weakly discussed, in a comparative perspective. We mainly study the sustainability of these inequalities by emphasizing its impact on economic growth. Measuring inequality was not unanimity among researchers. In our opinion, the most appropriate indicators include those of Gini index, Atkinson indexes and Generalized Entropy indexes. First, we build our own indicators measuring inequality in terms of education for 15 Arabs countries. We then conduct an analysis in an international comparative perspective, by gender and intergenerational. To account for the sustainability of the reduction of inequalities, we transpose the Kuznets curve in the field of education and verify its validity. Based on a macro-econometric model, we test empirically to what extent these alternative indicators can help us to improve the understanding of the relation between education and economic growth. To control the bias due to endogenous variables, we used the method of instrumental variables in panel data. A sensitivity analysis was also conducted to test the robustness of our results by approaching educational inequalities by different measures already built.
Empirically, after calculating our indicators, we analyze their evolution in the Arab countries in a comparative perspective taking into account gender, slices age and income level (Gulf countries VS middle income countries. The results suggest that inequalities in education have declined for all Arab countries for both men and women regardless of age. It also appears that the distribution of education is more egalitarian in the Gulf countries.
The results suggest also that the shape of the Kuznets curve depends on the measure used to approximate inequality. Indeed, the assumption of the Kuznets curve is checked if the standard deviation of schooling are used. For its part, the Gini index maintains a negative and significant relationship with the average number of years of schooling. In addition, the results suggest that Gulf countries has already entered the second phase of reducing inequality while middle-income countries are still in the first phase of rising inequality .
In a third step , we estimated the impact of inequality in education on economic growth with panel data. The results suggest that the Gini index of men negatively and significantly affects the growth of high-income countries. The total Gini index negatively and significantly impact economic growth as well as for all countries to high-income countries. A sensitivity analysis was conducted to test the robustness of our results by using both instrumental variable tools in panel data and more sophisticated indicators. The main conclusion to be made is to emphasize this dimension of education in the development of educational policies.The development of better indicators allows measuring more accurately the performance of education systems. It allows policy makers to make appropriate decisions and also the development of indicators to facilitate international comparisons.
These observations allow us to propose a redefinition of public priorities in education that should given the importance of reducing inequalities in education. This also corroborates with the results obtained by empirical studies according to which inequality in education reduces the growth potential of countries (Klasen and Lamanna (2009).