Sociology Index

Human Capital Accumulation

Capital accumulation, Capital

Human capital theory claims that the wealth of a nation is vested in its people. In a global economy, knowledge has become a key factor in international competitiveness. Since 2001, Canada's immigration policy has been framed by human capital theory.

Shifting to a human capital approach has meant identifying the most qualified potential immigrants in the world, based on their formal qualifications, skills and especially their educational attainments. Such immigrants find their skills and talents go unrecognized and they have a difficult time establishing themselves.

Their experiences represent a personal tragedy, but also the breakdown of the 'human capital' approach at the domestic level, with implications for Canada's competitiveness strategy.  - Human Capital Accumulation: Canada's New Mercantilism, Bassett, Carolyn.

From Physical to Human Capital Accumulation: Inequality in the Process of Development
Oded Galor, Brown University, Omer Moav, Hebrew University of Jerusalem

Abstract: The proposed theory argues that the replacement of physical capital accumulation by human capital accumulation as a prime engine of economic growth has changed the qualitative impact of inequality on the process of development. In early stages of industrialization as physical capital accumulation is a prime source of economic growth, inequality enhances the process of development by channeling resources towards individuals whose marginal propensity to save is higher. In later stages of development, however, as the return to human capital increases due to capital-skill complementarity, human capital becomes the prime engine of growth and equality, in the presence of credit constraints, stimulates investment in human capital and promotes economic growth.

Ethnicity and human capital accumulation in urban Mexico - Hugo Ņopo, Natalia Winder.
Inter-American Development Bank, Banco Interamericano de Desarrollo (BID)
Abstract: This study analyzes social mobility and human capital accumulation among ethnic minorities in Mexican urban areas, exploring changes in educational attainment and labor market status. The results indicate important ethnic differences in human capital accumulation patterns, especially in education, where non-indigenous individuals seem to accumulate human capital more rapidly than individuals of indigenous descent. Also, key socio-demographic characteristics linked to those patterns of human capital accumulation seem to differ between indigenous and non-indigenous individuals. In particular, for indigenous peoples in urban areas, human capital accumulation and wealth accumulation seem to work as substitutes rather than complements in the short run.
Conclusions: The results indicate important differences in the patterns of human capital accumulation between indigenous and non-indigenous groups living in urban areas. The picture seems to suggest, at least for the case of indigenous individuals, that even though efforts to improve living conditions and the efforts to accumulate human capital can be regarded as complementary efforts in the long run, in the short run they seem to operate as competitors.

Child mental health and human capital accumulation: The case of ADHD revisited
Fletcher, Jason & Wolfe, Barbara, 2008, Journal of Health Economics, Elsevier, vol. 27(3)
In this paper we look at a sample of older children and confirm and extend many of the JCMS findings in terms of a broader set of measures of human capital and additional specifications.

Peer Effects and Human Capital Accumulation: the Externalities of ADD
Anna Aizer, The NBER Bulletin on Aging and Health.
Improvements in peer behavior increase student achievement. Moreover, resources mitigate the negative effects of peer behavior. These findings imply that the optimal response in the presence of peer effects is not necessarily to reorganize classrooms. Rather, existing institutions can modify peer effects by improving behavior and/or mitigating the impact of poor behavior.