Schooling Choices and Career Path: Essays on Risk, Personality and Degrees

Abstract : This thesis is composed of three essays on the microeconometrics of education and labor market. Last decades faced the massification of higher education and higher unemployment rate. In this context, individual determinants of education choices and their links with career paths need to be seriously studied. The litterature underlines the key role of individual heterogeneity, especially socio-economic characteristics and family background. This research focuses on additional individual determinants of educational achievement and professional trajectory. The firstchapter adds a new dimension to educational human capital. By constructing a precise model of specialisation choices at each step of the educational path, it shows that the degree ofspecialisation can be as important as the total number of years of study in determining future earnings. The second part of this dissertation deals with the link between personality andeducational choices. Results show that achievements at age 17, whether academic or professional, are partly explained by differences in latent factors such as intelligence and motivation. However, risk aversion is poorly correlated with this result. The third contribution of this thesis studies the influence of risk aversion on wage trajectories. Results highlight its role in revenue growth: the more likely people are to take risks, the faster their wages grow, especially early in their careers .
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Mathias André. Schooling Choices and Career Path: Essays on Risk, Personality and Degrees. Business administration. École Polytechnique, 2015. English. ⟨NNT : 2015EPXX0119⟩. ⟨tel-02080116⟩

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