Who gets the good jobs? Educational experiences that result in economic and social mobility

Type Book
Title Who gets the good jobs? Educational experiences that result in economic and social mobility
Publication (Day/Month/Year) 2016
URL http://www.sahe.org.pk/wp-content/uploads/2016/12/Who-gets-the-good-jobs12016.pdf
Who gets the good jobs? This study attempts to explore the link between schooling and job
prospects by examining educational backgrounds, and profiles of mid and senior level managers in
reputable firms in the three main urban centres in the country. Using the metric of individual starting
salaries, we surveyed 828 people in mid and senior management level jobs at over one hundred
firms. We chose these urban centres specifically because they have larger populations, greater job
opportunities and higher enrolment and achievement rates than other cities. The study selected
employees at middle and senior positions between 20 to 35 and 36 to 45 years of age.
Our survey provides a snapshot of people with management level jobs. The study is not exhaustive.
A large, nationally representative, household survey would yield better, more durable insights in
terms of the link between education and employability. Such a study is urgently needed to inform
education policy. Our survey is a small contribution to help spur a policy response.
For parents, there is a wide variety of school options in Pakistan, which is why we elected to look at
the type of school rather than the number of years of schooling. While no categorisation could do
justice to the different educational experiences offered by all types of schools, we grouped schools
into five baskets for practical purposes. These are: low and top tier government schools and low, mid
and top tier private schools.
The point of departure is the assumption that different types of schools will produce different
salary levels among students down the line. We ascribe three factors that affect salary outcomes
for students. First, the quantum of support they receive at home. Second, the quantum of support
provided by the school, and third, exposure to the English language. We therefore created two
indices, one each for home and school support. Exposure to English is covered by both.
In addition, we asked two other questions:
• How much of an advantage does education at a top tier school provide over the rest?
• Do students from private low tier schools emerge with better upward mobility compared to
students in government low tier schools?
The school support (or school quality) index and the household characteristics (or home support)
index helped us identify and track a range of questions about today’s mid-level or senior level
managers’ experience at school: how educated a child’s parents were, to what level were their
brothers and sisters educated, did a child get support with homework, how much access to the
general electronic media they enjoyed and so on.

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