Human capital development at school and work

Maria Ferreira Sequeda

Research output: ThesisDoctoral ThesisInternal

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Rapid technical change and globalisation have prompted policy makers to prioritise people’s skill development as a key strategy for economic and social progress. This thesis studies the dynamics of the skill development of children (at school) and adults (at work), looking specifically at students affected by grade retention and workers in temporary employment or in a job-skill mismatch. This dissertation answers three questions: 1) Does grade retention influence school dropout and school performance of retained and non-retained students?, 2) Does informal learning at work differ between temporary and permanent workers?, and 3) What is the relation between job-skill mismatch, work-related learning and skill development and depreciation? This thesis shows that grade retention in secondary school has decreasing benefits for retained students and significantly increases school dropout. The impact of retention on school dropout and peers’ performance outbalances the direct gains of increasing student retention. This dissertation also shows that workers in temporary jobs invest more intensively in informal learning on the job than their counterparts in permanent contracts, and that employees in a mismatch job differ in the extent to which learning investments actually contribute to the development of their skills during their working life.
Original languageEnglish
Awarding Institution
  • Maastricht University
  • de Grip, Andries, Supervisor
  • Künn, Annemarie, Co-Supervisor
Award date10 May 2019
Place of PublicationMaastricht
Print ISBNs978-90-5321-577-7
Publication statusPublished - 2019


  • school retention
  • School dropout
  • job-skill mismatch labour


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