Employers regularly complain of a shortage of qualified scientists and advocate that to remain competitive more scientists need to be trained. However, using a survey of graduates from British universities, I report that 3 years after graduation less than 50% of graduates from science subjects are working in a scientific occupation.
Accounting for selection into major and occupation type, I estimate the wages of graduates and report that the wage premium of science graduates only occurs when these graduates are matched to a scientific occupation – and not because science skills are in demand in all occupations. I also provide additional evidence to assess whether science graduates are pushed or pulled into non-scientific occupations. Altogether, the evidence does not support the claim that science graduates are pulled by better conditions, financial or otherwise, into non-scientific jobs.
Chevalier, A. (2017), "To Be or Not to Be a Scientist?
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