How Cognitive and Different Non-cognitive Characteristics Affect Labour Market Outcomes

A lecture by Robin Samuel, Department of the Social Sciences, University of Basel

In economics and sociology, there is an increasing interest in the effects of noncognitive characteristics on labor market outcomes (Heckman, Stixrud, and Urzua 2006; Heineck and Anger 2010). It is common sense that, for example, self-esteem and self-efficacy foster social and economic success (Jencks 1979). Several studies point in this direction (Osborne Groves 2005). However, only few researchers have examined how noncognitive characteristics and traits affect labor market outcomes relative to cognitive characteristics (e.g., Jackson 2006; Solga and Kohlrausch 2012). In this talk, Robin examines the relative effects of cognitive and noncognitive characteristics on employment status, earnings, and job satisfaction. He will focus on the variation of these effects across different educational tracks and dimensions of noncognitive characteristics during school-to-work transitions.