Journal of Economics and Economic Education Research (Print ISSN: 1533-3590; Online ISSN: 1533-3604)


Childhood and Adulthood Skill Acquisition - Importance for Labor Market Outcomes

Author(s): Kenneth Lykke Sorensen, Karl Fritjof Krassel

Using Danish matched PISA and PIAAC data; the study investigates the return to cognitive and non-cognitive skills to labor market outcomes. It measured skills at childhood and adulthood after entering the labor market. Hence, both whether cognitive and/or non-cognitive skills relate to earnings and employment rate were measured as well as how important the timing of acquiring skills was for outcomes on the labor market. Overall it was found that cognitive skills are important for both earnings and the employment rate but that the timing of the acquisition of the skills is of less importance. On the contrary, non-cognitive skills are important for earnings independent on whether the worker had high or low cognitive skills at childhood, but only important for the employment rate for workers with high cognitive and low non-cognitive childhood skills. Overall findings suggested that both cognitive and non-cognitive skills are important but that the dynamics differ.