Green returns to education: Does schooling contribute to pro-environmental behaviours? Evidence from Thailand

Thanyaporn Chankrajang, Raya Muttarak

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127 Citations (Scopus)


We investigate whether there are green returns to education, where formal education encourages pro-environmental behaviours using nationally representative surveys on environmental issues in Thailand. To establish the causal relationship between education and green behaviours, we exploit the instrumental variables strategy using the supply of state primary schooling i.e. the corresponding number of teachers per 1000 children, which varies over time and across regions as the instrument, while controlling for regional, cohort and income effects. We find that more years of schooling lead to a greater probability of taking knowledge-based environmentally-friendly actions a great deal, but not cost-saving pro-environmental actions. In addition, the paper finds no significant impact of formal education on concern about global warming nor the willingness to pay for environmental tax.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)434-448
Number of pages15
JournalEcological Economics
Early online date6 Oct 2016
Publication statusPublished - 1 Jan 2017


  • Education
  • Instrumental variables
  • Pro-environmental behaviours
  • Thailand

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