Human Capital Investment through Education: The way to an equitable middle class in South Africa
Name: Laura Peterjohn
Advisor: Dr. Brooke Krause; Dr Melanie Long (second reader)
When Apartheid ended in 1994 South Africa was left with one of the most unequal economic systems in the world. As non-white South Africans gained rights, and new classes emerged it was clear the growth of the black middle class remined stagnant. This thesis hypothesizes that educational experiences differ based on race and that leads to lower income levels and decreased class mobility. While arguing that the introduction of education-based policies would help grow the black middle class by promoting economic growth and increasing class mobility. In previous literature the failed attempts of policy to promote economic growth and the resulting stagnant middle class have been explored, along with the lack of equity in the South African education system, but few connections have been drawn between the inequitable education system and stagnant middle class for black South Africans. Using data from IPUMS International to support macro-economic growth theory surrounding human capital, this analysis shows a positive relationship between higher education and income levels. However, when examining the relationship between education and income for black South Africans a negative relationship appears. This suggests that educational inequality exists in ways that do not help black South Africans to participate in economic growth and experience mobility across socioeconomic statuses.
3 responses to “Human Capital Investment through Education: The way to an equitable middle class in South Africa”
Related Areas of Study
Students benefit from the small classes and access to faculty members in the small private liberal arts setting at Wooster.Major Minor
Learn how humans organize to sustain life and enhance its quality from a diversity of economic perspectivesMajor Minor