Douglas Staiger

First name
Douglas
Last name
Staiger
Abstract

We propose a general method of moments technique to identify measurement error in self-reported
and transcript-reported schooling using differences in wages, test scores and other covariates to discern the
relative verity of each measure. We also explore the implications of such reporting errors for both OLS and
IV estimates of the returns to schooling. The results cast a new light on two common findings in the
extensive literature on the retums to schooling: “sheepskin effects” and the recent IV estimates, relying on
“natural experiments” to identify the payoff to schooling. First, respondents tend to self-report degree
attainment much more accurately than they report educational attainment not corresponding with degree
attainment. For instance, we estimate that more than 90 percent of those with associate’s or bachelor’s
degrees accurately report degree attainment, while only slightly over half of those with l or 2 years of college
credits accurately report their educational attainment. As a result, OLS estimates tend to understate returns
per year of schooling and overstate degree effects. Second, because the measurement error in educational
attainment is non-classical, IV estimates also tend to be biased, although the magnitude of the bias depends
upon the nature of the measurement error in the region of educational attainment affected by the instrument.

Year of Publication
1999
Number
419
Date Published
06/1999
Publication Language
eng
Citation Key
8345
Staiger, D., Kane, T., & Rouse, C. (1999). Estimating Returns to Schooling When Schooling is Misreported. Retrieved from http://arks.princeton.edu/ark:/88435/dsp01vm40xr59g (Original work published June 1999)
Working Papers
Abstract

A variety of recent theoretical and empirical advances have renewed interest in
monopsonistic models of the labor market. However, there is little direct empirical support
for these models, even in labor markets that are textbook examples of monopsony. We use
an exogenous change in wages at Veterans Affairs hospitals as a natural experiment to
investigate the extent of monopsony in the nurse labor market. In contrast to much of the prior
literature, we estimate that labor supply to individual hospitals is quite inelastic, with short-run
elasticity around 0.1. We also find that non-VA hospitals responded to the VA wage change
by changing their own wages.

Year of Publication
2008
Number
545
Date Published
12/2008
Publication Language
eng
Citation Key
8341
Staiger, D., Spetz, J., & Phibbs, C. (2008). Is There Monopsony in the Labor Market? Evidence From A Natural Experiment. Retrieved from http://arks.princeton.edu/ark:/88435/dsp01cn69m414g (Original work published December 2008)
Working Papers