Education inequality has always been a concern for policy makers due to its long-term and intergenerational impacts. This paper examines the determinants and the sources of education inequality among the youth in the MENA region using harmonized income and expenditure surveys. More attention is given to income and regional disparities as source of education inequality. The paper makes use of the Recentered Influence Functions (RIF) unconditional regression techniques to examine youth education inequality measured by years of schooling and to identify the determinants of Gini index of education across countries. The findings show that higher household income reduces education inequality among youth in Iraq and higher education expenditure reduces education inequality for youth in both Egypt and Iraq. Health expenditure is found to be having insignificant impact on education inequality for youth in all countries. Moreover, increasing the number of earners in the household reduce education inequality in both Jordan and Palestine and increases youth education inequality in Iraq and Egypt. It has been also deduced that rural regions are at a disadvantage in terms of educational attainment and educational inequality in comparison to urban regions across all countries and all income quartiles. The decomposition of rich-poor education inequality, reveals that the education gap among youth appear to increase for the poor compared to the rich. Finally, there is a declining trend in youth educational inequality over time for Egypt and Iraq. However, the gap seems to be widening for Jordan and Palestine.
Youth Education Inequality MENA RIF Unconditional Quantile Regression