Economics & Sociology

ISSN: 2071-789X eISSN: 2306-3459 DOI: 10.14254/2071-789X
Index PUBMS: f5512f57-a601-11e7-8f0e-080027f4daa0
Article information
Title: The mediating role of oil returns in relationship between investment in higher education and economic growth: Evidence from Saudi Arabia
Issue: Vol. 13, No 1, 2020
Published date: 03-2020 (print) / 03-2020 (online)
Journal: Economics & Sociology
ISSN: 2071-789X, eISSN: 2306-3459
Authors: Allam Hamdan
Ahlia University, Manama, Bahrain

Reem Hamdan
Ahlia University, Manama, Bahrain, Brunel University, London, United Kingdom
Keywords: economic growth, expenditure on higher education, oil-dependent economies, Saudi Arabia, mediation model
DOI: 10.14254/2071-789X.2020/13-1/8
Index PUBMS: c56e7dbe-78c2-11ea-a0f3-fa163e0fa1a0
Language: English
Pages: 116-131 (16)
JEL classification: B22, N10, N30, Q28, Q32
The authors wish to dedicate this work to Professor Abdulla Al Hawaj the Founding President and Professor Mansoor Alaali the President of Ahlia University for the unconditioned and continuous support of academic research. The author wishes to thank the Deputy Editor-in-Chief Professor Yuriy Bilan from Rzeszow University of Technology, Poland, anonymous reviewers for their comments and suggestions, and Dr. Richard Thomas Cummings from Ahlia University, Bahrain, for his valuable assistance in improving the paper.

This study aims to investigate the mediating role of oil returns in the relationship between investment in higher education and economic growth in Saudi Arabia, which has invested in higher education and knowledge creation as part of the sustainable development process. Expenditures on higher education, representing a large part of this country’s budget, aims to develop its educational systems in alignment with the requirements of its development plans. This study initially overviews the trends in expenditure on higher education in Saudi Arabia and then articulates, using unit root, cointegration, granger causality and multiple regression tests, a standard model in which educational investment, as an independent variable, will be regressed against the measures of economic development, as dependent variables, in Saudi Arabia in the period of forty (40) years, since 1978 until 2017. The study model fails to find a mediating role of oil returns in the relationship between investment in higher education and economic growth in Saudi Arabia. Neither did it find that investment in higher education actually generates economic growth in Saudi Arabia. However, it has been found that oil wealth is the engine of investment in higher education.


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