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Exploring job preferences of business and economics students from Colombia, Ecuador and Spain: a discrete choice experiment

Gabriela Morejón Cabrera (Department of Quantitative Methods, University of the Basque Country, Bilbao, Spain)
Petr Mariel (Department of Quantitative Methods, University of the Basque Country, Bilbao, Spain)

International Journal of Manpower

ISSN: 0143-7720

Article publication date: 4 August 2023

Issue publication date: 9 November 2023

140

Abstract

Purpose

This study analyses the future job characteristics that are preferred by economics and business administration students in three specific regions of Spain, Colombia and Ecuador, and estimates their willingness to accept each.

Design/methodology/approach

A discrete choice experiment (DCE) is carried out in these three regions. The econometric approach is based on the Random Parameter Logit model, which accounts for both the observed and unobserved heterogeneity by the use of socio-demographic variables and correlated random parameters.

Findings

The main conclusions indicate that the most important job characteristic for students in all three countries is the long-term career prospects at the company, while a permanent contract is one of the least important job attributes. Regarding the more specific conclusions related to each country, the Ecuadorian students seem to have a higher preference for training opportunities, given the strong relationship between the level of education and the job category. The Spanish students seem to value their commuting time more highly than the South American students.

Originality/value

To authors’ best knowledge, this is the first DCE-based study of economics and business administration students’ preferences for future jobs that has been conducted simultaneously in three countries on two different continents. Furthermore, this study presents fresh cross-country data that allow authors to compare student choices between South American and European countries. As a result, by focusing on the DCE approach, this study estimated the monetary amount that students from each country are willing to accept for each of the analysed job characteristics. Thus, this research fills a vacuum in the literature on student job preferences between three Latin speaking countries.

Keywords

Acknowledgements

The first author acknowledges financial support from the Department of Education, Universities and Research of the Basque Government (through pre-doctoral scholarship PRE_2018_1_0277). The second author acknowledges financial support from MCIN/AEI/10.13039/501100011033 through grants PID2020-113650RB-I00, the Basque Government through grant IT1508-22 (UPV/EHU Econometrics Research Group), and FEDER “Una manera de hacer Europa”/Unión Europea “NextGenerationEU”. The authors are grateful to the schools of economics and business administration of the participant universities for their collaboration in the data collection process. The University of the Basque Country in Spain (UPV/EHU), the Central University of Ecuador (UCE), the National Polytechnic School (EPN), and the Pontifical Catholic University of Ecuador (PUCE) in Ecuador, and Pontificia Universidad Javeriana in Colombia.

Citation

Morejón Cabrera, G. and Mariel, P. (2023), "Exploring job preferences of business and economics students from Colombia, Ecuador and Spain: a discrete choice experiment", International Journal of Manpower, Vol. 44 No. 6, pp. 1221-1247. https://doi.org/10.1108/IJM-04-2022-0163

Publisher

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Emerald Publishing Limited

Copyright © 2023, Emerald Publishing Limited

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