Inequalities in higher education and the structure of the labour market
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Part of the ongoing research on the employment experiences of university graduates in South Africa and based upon the most comprehensive tracer study of university graduates yet conducted, this paper looks at the inequities in higher education and their consequences in the labour market for people with tertiary qualification.
Two key phenomena in occupation segregation in the South African labour market are examined: discrimination and acquired human capital, and it is argued here that these perpetuate the inequalities observed in the labour market. The influence of inequities in acquired human capital on educational attainment is examined, and the related influence on labour market prospects and the impact of qualification differences and other discriminatory factors on employment in South Africa are explored, in light of the key role that higher education has to play.