Education and training have been at the forefront of public policy discussion and of government policy-making in most European countries for several decades. In this period a significant number of educational reforms have been implemented, while others are pending. One of the reasons for this continuing attention to education and educational policies is to be found in the strategic importance that the accumulation of knowledge has gained in the functioning of modern economies. Investment in 'human capital', in the form of education and work-based training, has proved a powerful way of improving employability, wages and lifetime earnings of individuals. There is also evidence that investment in education is crucial for countries' economic growth and productivity. The contributions in this volume address a number of questions. Are highly qualified individuals really more productive or simply screened into employment because of their high qualifications? What are the interactions between private and public schools for growth, inequality and social mobility? What are the determinants of the quality and efficiency of an education system? How can schooling systems be financed in incomplete and imperfect markets?

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