Does education help “old dogs” learn “new tricks”? The lasting impact of early-life education on technology use among older adults

Détails

ID Serval
serval:BIB_22CB1545D84E
Type
Article: article d'un périodique ou d'un magazine.
Collection
Publications
Institution
Titre
Does education help “old dogs” learn “new tricks”? The lasting impact of early-life education on technology use among older adults
Périodique
Research Policy
Auteur(s)
Kämpfen F., Maurer J.
ISSN
0048-7333
Statut éditorial
Publié
Date de publication
31/03/2018
Peer-reviewed
Oui
Volume
47
Numéro
6
Pages
1125-1132
Langue
anglais
Résumé
Technological progress is often at the heart of improvements in quality of life. The development of personal computers (PCs) and the Internet are among the most important technological advances of the last century. PCs and the Internet have profoundly changed the way we access information, shop, view media, communicate, socialize, and spend our time. Despite the many benefits of computer and Internet use, certain population groups – especially low-educated and older consumers – have not yet fully adopted computer technology and the Internet in their daily lives. This paper estimates the effects of early-life education on computer and Internet use among older Italians. Using data on early-life educational attainment and computer and Internet use of older adults from the 2013 Survey of Health, Ageing and Retirement in Europe (SHARE), we exploit a historical increase in compulsory schooling in Italy as an instrumental variable for education to estimate the effects of early-life education on the adoption of PCs and on current use of the Internet. We find large and statistically significant effects of early-life education on later-life technology use among older persons who obtained additional education due to increased schooling requirements. In our benchmark estimations, one additional year of schooling resulted in an eight percentage point increase in the probability of having ever used a computer and in a 12 percentage point increase in the probability of reporting to have at least good computer skills. Individuals affected by the reform were also six percentage points more likely to have used the Internet in the last week. These findings are robust across different sample selection and model specification strategies. Our analysis also suggests that occupational choice and computer use at work are important channels through which education affects the adoption and use of computers and the Internet. Our findings thus highlight the likely importance of early-life education for later-life computer and the Internet use and perhaps technology adoption more broadly.
Mots-clé
Technology adoption, Personal computers, Internet, Education, Instrumental variable
Création de la notice
05/04/2018 8:09
Dernière modification de la notice
21/08/2019 5:17
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