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Overeducation in Europe – Its rise is by no means a universal pattern

After analysing the time-series data, the study finds that while overeducation tends to rise over time in a number of European countries, this is by no means a universal pattern.

Overeducation was found to be static and had even declined in some European countries. Indeed, a positive finding was that overeducation had not risen in the majority of countries in our study.

Despite such disparities, long-run trends and relationships were found to exist within and between countries. The evidence suggests that while overeducation rates in Europe are converging upwards over time, the general pattern of overeducation growth is linked across many countries. Therefore, while overeducation rates are generally converging to a higher level, they tend to follow a similar trend pattern suggesting that the phenomena responds in a similar way to external shocks and, consequently, is likely to react in similar ways to appropriate policy interventions. However, the research suggests that overeducation within peripheral states evolves somewhat differently relative to the rest of Europe, suggesting that a separate policy response is likely to be appropriate.

Finally, in terms of the determinants of overeducation, some common themes emerge. The interaction of labour market demand and supply is important and overeducation is undoubtedly linked to education over-supply. Labour deregulation, in the use of temporary workers, tends to stimulate the growth in overeducation in many countries while migration tends to lower it in new and peripheral states.

Chosen excerpts by Job Market Monitor. Read the whole story at Policy synthesis and integrative report on mismatch skills and education


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