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Education and growth in East Asia

Economics of Education Review Volume 17, Number 2 ISSN 0272-7757 Publisher: Elsevier Ltd


In the new endogenous growth and augmented Solow models, human capita is central to the growth process. Its role in the diffusion of knowledge and technology offsets the diminishing returns to physical capital that otherwise occurs. Per capita output thereby grows, given appropriate policies, without bounds. This paper applies production functions with education externalities to the rapidly growing countries of East Asia. It tests for the net effects of differences in policies concerning enrollments vs expenditures at each level, and for feedbacks through the effect of education on rates of physical capital investment. It finds that since most countries had universal primary education early, the rate at which secondary education expanded (necessary to successful exports), was crucial in achieving high rates of investment and high per capita growth. Secondary and higher education expenditures are more significant after primary enrollments are universal. There is evidence of convergence within the region. [JEL 011, 047, 053, 120]


McMahon, W.W. Education and growth in East Asia. Economics of Education Review, 17(2), 159-172. Elsevier Ltd. Retrieved November 26, 2020 from .

This record was imported from Economics of Education Review on February 1, 2019. Economics of Education Review is a publication of Elsevier.

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