The Long-Term Effects of Long Terms – Compulsory Schooling Reforms in Sweden

Reprint No. 2020:84

Author(s): Martin Fischer, Martin Karlsson, Therese Nilsson and Nina SchwarzYear: 2020 Title: Journal of the European Economic Association Volume (No.): 18 (6) Pages: 2776–2823
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Preliminary version

We evaluate the impact on earnings, pensions, and further labor market outcomes of two parallel educational reforms increasing instructional time in Swedish primary school. The reforms extended the annual term length and years of compulsory schooling by comparable amounts. We find striking differences in the effects of the two reforms: at 5% the returns to the term length extension were sizeable and benefited broad ranges of the population. The compulsory schooling extension had small (2%) albeit significant effects, which were possibly driven by an increase in post-compulsory schooling. Both reforms led to increased sorting into occupations with heavy reliance on basic skills and the term extension reduced the gender gap in employment and earnings.

Fischer, Martin, Martin Karlsson, Therese Nilsson and Nina Schwarz (2020), "The Long-Term Effects of Long Terms – Compulsory Schooling Reforms in Sweden". Journal of the European Economic Association 18(6), 2776–2823.

Therese Nilsson


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