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Fairness in education

Working Paper 2010-175


In 2001 the Italian tertiary education system embarked in a broad process of reform. The main novelty brought by the reform was a reduction of the length of study to get a first level degree together with the introduction of a 2-years, second level, master degree. This paper aims at studying the effects of the reform in terms of fairness in educational opportunity. In order to do so we first define fairness criteria following a well-developed responsibility sensitive egalitarian literature, we then discuss existing inequality of opportunity measures consistent with these criteria, we show their relationship, and we adapt them to the educational framework. We finally employ this set of measures to show the evolution of fairness in the access to university in Italy before and after the reform.

Authors: Paolo Brunori, Vito Peragine, Laura Serlenga .

Keywords: Equality of opportunity, higher education.
JEL: D31, D63, C14, I2