Saturday, November 11, 2017

Lifetime Earnings for Different Majors

Via the Times. You may have to click on it to read it, but it's a pretty big file.

Some of this has to do, not with how useful what you learn is, but what kind of person chooses that major; for example, political science majors earn more than philosophy majors, but not in politics.

I suspect that most of the the high-earning physics majors ended up in computers or studied engineering in graduate school.

I wonder what will happen to the salaries of accounting majors, now that so many firms are outsourcing their accounting to firms in India?

Biology has slid down the ladder from being like a hard science to being more like a social science, because of a flood of undergraduates choosing it and a big growth in jobs with biotech companies that amount to assembly-line labor.

But really the most striking thing about this chart is how small the differences are. This is the sort of income distribution I would like to see for our whole society, with a difference between $1.5 million at the low end and $6 million at the high end. All of the really high incomes come from people above the 90% percentile. In my fantasy world, we would find a way to squeeze their incomes back down toward what a top chemical engineer earns, and raise the incomes of those at the bottom up above that $1.5 million figure.

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