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Abstract

This paper estimates returns to education for a sample of farm operators in Northern Ireland. The analysis examines the relationship between education and on-farm and off-farm labour incomes. Human capital earnings functions are estimated to identify the marginal return to education measured as years of schooling as well as the qualification level attained. Extending to a structural model, the methodology controls for the endogeneity of education in the earnings function and potential selection bias associated with off-farm labour market participation. In off-farm employment, the analysis shows that returns to education are of the order of between 6% and 9% for each additional year of schooling. However, on-farm earnings were not found to be significantly related to years of education, although the analysis does identify a significant on-farm return to an agricultural qualification

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