Unawareness and Selective Disclosure: The Effect of School Quality Information on Property Prices

Prof. Dr. John P. Haisken-DeNew, Melbourne Institute of Applied Economic and Social Research, University of Melbourne

The Australian Government launched the My School website in 2010 to provide standardised information about the quality of schools to the Australian public. This paper combines data from this website with home sales data for the state of Victoria to estimate the effect of the publication of school quality information on property prices. We use a difference-in-difference approach to estimate the causal effect of the release of information about high-quality and low-quality schools relative to medium-quality schools in the neighborhood and find that the release of information about high-quality schools increases property prices by 3.6 percent, whereas the release of information about low-quality schools has no significant effect. The findings indicate that many buyers are unaware of the relevance of school quality information and that real estate agents pursue a strategy of disclosing information about high-quality schools to increase the sales price. Results from a survey of Victorian real estate agents provide evidence in favor of this strategy.

About the speaker

Prof. Dr. John P. Haisken-DeNew is Professorial Research Fellow and Deputy Director (Projects) at the Melbourne Institute of Applied Economic and Social Research, University of Melbourne, Australia. His research interests include amongst others education, health, applied labour economics, applied micro econometrics, migration, welfare and income inequality.

He has published in many top ranking journals such as American Economic Review, Journal of Economic Behavior & Organization, Journal of Comparative Economics, Journal of Population Economics, Applied Economics, Labour Economics and Economics Letters.

He has held various administrative positions at the University of Melbourne including Deputy Director of the Melbourne Institute,Associate Dean Research and Associate Dean Research Training for the Faculty of Business and Economics. He was previously a fully tenured “Beamter auf Lebenszeit” W3 Professor of Economics and holder of the Chair “Economic Policy: Competition Theory and Policy” at the Ruhr University Bochum, Germany, from March 2009 to June 2013. He received his doctorate in economics in 1995 at the University of Munich. Last but not least, he is the author of the panel data package for Stata called “PanelWhiz” (http://www.panelwhiz.eu).

Venue: Conference room (0.16 & 0.17)

Date: 18 September 2017

Time: 12:00 - 13:00  CET