CGHE Seminar 37

Should governments worry about graduate underemployment?

Every few weeks some new report raises concerns about graduate underemployment, whereby graduates are obliged to undertake non-graduate jobs. So, should governments be concerned?

Professor Green’s short answer to this question is: ‘Yes, but …’. In this presentation, he examines theory and evidence surrounding graduate educational underemployment in 21 countries.

Yes, underemployment’s association with lower job satisfaction and pay is widespread, and this is the primary reason for concern. But there are external benefits associated with higher education, even for those who are underemployed.

Professor Green concludes that governments should monitor graduate underemployment, but that higher education policy should be based on social returns and should recall higher education’s wider purposes.

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Francis Green

Francis Green

Francis Green is a Co-Investigator on CGHE’s social and economic impact of higher education research programme.

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