NATIONAL BUREAU OF ECONOMIC RESEARCH
NATIONAL BUREAU OF ECONOMIC RESEARCH

Educational Mismatch Among Ph.D.s: Determinants and Consequences

Keith A. Bender, John S. Heywood

NBER Working Paper No. 12693
Issued in November 2006
NBER Program(s):   ED

Using the Survey of Doctoral Recipients, the magnitude and consequences of job mismatch are estimated for Ph.D.s in science. Approximately one-sixth of academics and nearly one-half of nonacademics report some degree of mismatch. The influence of job mismatch is estimated for three job outcomes: earnings, job satisfaction and turnover. Surprisingly large and robust influences emerge. Mismatch is associated with substantially lower earnings, lower job satisfaction and a higher rate of turnover. These results persist across a variety of specifications and hold for both academics and nonacademics. Estimates of the determinants of mismatch indicate that older workers and those in rapidly changing disciplines are more likely to be mismatched and there is a suggestion that women are more likely to be mismatched.

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Published: Keith A. Bender & John S. Heywood, 2009. "Educational Mismatch among Ph.D.s: Determinants and Consequences," NBER Chapters, in: Science and Engineering Careers in the United States: An Analysis of Markets and Employment, pages 229-255 National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.

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