Implementation and perception in school choice

This project will push the boundaries of scientific knowledge on the design and inner workings of school admission systems that are based on school choice.

We ask three interlinked questions:

i) Are there fundamental differences in how students’ admission to various high schools in Denmark affect their academic outcomes?

ii) How do student applicants perceive schools’ social composition and ability to raise admitted students’ outcomes and how do their preferences responds to the perceptions?

iii) How will socioeconomic admission quotas and information to applicants affect students’ academic progress after admission and social segregation between schools?

To answer these questions, we will leverage recent methodological advances on estimating students’ preferences and how admission affect students in combination with the unique access to enrollment data in the context of centralized high-school admission in Denmark.



Part A: Opening the black box of school value-added

A core element of the project is measuring school value-added for raising the admitted students’ academic prospects. We will leverage recent methodological advances in using admission data to measure the school value-added from quasi-random assignment to over-subscribed schools.

Part B: The origins of students’ preferences

In this part, we measure the accuracy of students’ perceptions of school characteristics and estimate preferences accounting for mis-perceptions.

Part C: The impact of correcting applicant mis-perceptions

The next part of the project will analyze how the provision of information to high school applicants on school composition alters their perceptions and application behavior.

Part D: The impact of socioeconomic admission quotas on diversity and welfare

In this final part, we combine the earlier project parts, school value-added measures, and student preference estimates, to perform a counterfactual analysis.



PI, Andreas Bjerre-Nielsen and Mikkel Høst Gandil have collaborated on earlier projects. They collaborate with top scholars in the field from Yale and Amsterdam. Please see list of group members below.



Name Title Job responsibilities Image
Andreas Bjerre-Nielsen Associate Professor Social Networks; Economics of Education; Human Mobility; Data Science & Game Theory Billede af Andreas Bjerre-Nielsen

Funded by:

Implementation and perception in school choice has received a four year funding

Period:  August 2023 - August 2027


PI, Associate professor Andreas Bjerre-Nielsen

External members:

Name Title Phone E-mail
Mikkel Høst Gandil Assistant professor E-mail
Christopher Neilson Professor E-mail
Hessel Oosterbeek Professor E-mail