Please use this identifier to cite or link to this item: http://hdl.handle.net/10419/208045
Authors: 
Lergetporer, Philipp
Woessmann, Ludger
Year of Publication: 
2019
Series/Report no.: 
Discussion Paper No. 145
Abstract: 
Public preferences for charging tuition are important for determining higher education finance. To test whether public support for tuition depends on information and design, we devise several survey experiments in representative samples of the German electorate (N>19,500). The electorate is divided, with a slight plurality opposing tuition. Providing information on the university earnings premium raises support for tuition by 7 percentage points, turning the plurality in favor. The opposition-reducing effect persists two weeks after treatment. Information on fiscal costs and unequal access does not affect public preferences. Designing tuition as deferred income-contingent payments raises support by 16 percentage points, creating a strong majority favoring tuition. The same effect emerges when framed as loan payments. Support decreases with higher tuition levels and increases when targeted at non-EU students.
Subjects: 
tuition
higher education
political economy
survey experiments
information
earnings premium
income-contingent loans
voting
JEL: 
I22
H52
D72
D83
Document Type: 
Working Paper

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