Education for Democracy: Evidence in Latin America


Education is widely recognized as a catalyst for personal development, social progress, and economic growth. However, the benefits of education extend far beyond the individual level. Such effects give rise to a series of positive externalities, which spread throughout society. The most significant factors of this effect have played a very important role in making democracy a viable system. This conception, which begins with Tocqueville is received in the academic scenario with the work of Lipset, who reports that education is fundamental for sustaining a democratic system. In this sense, the objective of this work is to analyze the causal relationship between education and democracy. Taking advantage of the similarity of the historical-political context referenced by Latin America, we seek to objectively measure whether education improves the recognition of democracy as a social, economic, and cultural condition that allows the free and equal exercise of political self-determination. To identify the causal effects of education on political behavior, we must take into account the factors that jointly determine educational choice and political behavior. Therefore, we will employ the instrumental variable (IV) method, where an individual's educational level is instrumentalized by their exposure to compulsory education reform. Thus, the temporal dimension distinguishes the periods before and after the educational reforms. The results found in this work provide convincing evidence for the causal relationship between education and democracy.

Author Information
Igor dos Santos Rodrigues, Escola Nacional de Administração Pública - ENAP, Brasil

Paper Information
Conference: BCE2023
Stream: Education

This paper is part of the BCE2023 Conference Proceedings (View)
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To cite this article:
Rodrigues I. (2023) Education for Democracy: Evidence in Latin America ISSN: 2435-9467 – The Barcelona Conference on Education 2023: Official Conference Proceedings
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Posted by James Alexander Gordon