Tuesday, June 24

The effect of education on religion: Evidence from compulsory schooling laws

Hmmm, very curious set of findings..

For over a century, social scientists have debated how educational attainment impacts religious belief. In this paper, I use Canadian compulsory schooling laws to identify the relationship between completed schooling and later religiosity. I find that higher levels of education lead to lower levels of religious affiliation later in life. An additional year of education leads to a 4-percentage-point decline in the likelihood that an individual identifies with any religious tradition. This is a reasonably large effect: extrapolating the results to the broader population would suggest that increases in schooling could explain most of the large rise in non-affiliation in Canada in recent decades.

but I am wondering if this holds for all religions….outliers are of course people who are all smarty pants (the Islamists and Internet Hindus…) but are frankly crashing bores at best and totally idiotic at best. I am reminded of Churchill’s point, “a fanatic is a person who wouldn't change his mind and wouldn't change the subject” :)

but interesting..more education indeed is required.

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