The Hidden Costs of Ethnic Conflict: Decomposing Trends in Educational Outcomes of Young Kosovars

Soumya Alva, University of North Carolina
Edmundo Murrugarra, World Bank Group
Pierella Paci, World Bank Group

Using the 2001 Kosovo LSMS data, this paper examines cohort differences in exposure to the ethnically-segmented education system to estimate its effects on post-primary educational outcomes of Albanian youth defined in terms of enrolment in secondary education. The first cohort includes individuals who entered secondary education before 1991, when the "parallel" education system was initiated. The second includes individuals who entered secondary school in the last ten years under the ethnically-segmented education system and during the recent conflict. Our results suggest that the last decade of ethnic tension has claimed a substantial toll on the educational outcomes of the young male Albanian Kosovars. In addition to declines in their enrolment rates in secondary education, if enrolled, they are expected to complete one less year in education. However, the parallel system has encouraged secondary school enrollment for girls, but with a sharp decline in the expected numbers of years completed.

Presented in Session 59: Child and Youth Well-Being in Developing Countries