Do Nurses React to Inter-Industry Wage Differentials? – Evidence from Nursing Graduates in the Netherlands.

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingChapterAcademic


This paper explores the extent to which inter-industry wage differentials can explain the decision of nursing graduates to quit the life sciences and health industry (LSH). Using the theoretical framework of Lazaer (2009), it is predicted that nurses drop-out of LSH in case their weighted general skills pay-off more in foreign industries than seniority in LSH. It is also predicted that industries demanding rigorous specific skills are prone to skill shortages. The empirical strategy benefits from data of the Dutch higher vocational school leaving monitor on abilities necessary to perform in the job. Owing to iterative one-to-one matching, we make 2003 to 2011 graduates homogenous with respect to their general skills. The results are in line with the predictions: nurses, who leave LSH, can earn significantly higher wages of about 2 percent. This estimate is particularly driven by female nurses and vertical industry mobility.
Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationContemporary Education Issues from an Economics Perspective
EditorsKristof De Witte
Place of PublicationLeuven
Publication statusPublished - 2015

Cite this