RWI – Leibniz Institute for Economic Research

Research Foci in the Network:
Knowledge and Participation, Education and Equity, Returns to Education
Research Disciplines:
Contact at the Institute:
Dr. Marcus Tamm (tamm[at]


RWI is a leading center for economic research and evidence-based policy advice in Germany. The institute was founded in 1926 and is a registered independent research institute since 1943. RWI’s focal points of research work are based on the latest theoretical and empirical findings. In five research divisions, RWI addresses a wide array of economic issues and research questions ranging from the individual to the global economy. At “Labor Markets, Education, Population” and “Health Economics” the main focus of research is on the analysis of individual actors and their behavior. The research divisions “Enterprise and Innovation” and “Environment and Resources” analyze developments of businesses and markets. The division “Macroeconomics and Public Finance” examines macroeconomic issues. The “Research Data Centre Ruhr” (FDZ Ruhr) provides researchers with latest empirical methods and data. RWI’s research findings and policy contributions are made available to the public through various publication series.

Important work and services:

  • RWI analyses the determinants of educational decisions and returns to education. In this research area, RWI has a specific focus on vocational education and lifelong learning and on the impact of education on labor market outcomes.
  • The analysis of the causal impact of reforms to the educational system is central to RWI’s work.
  • The institute has written several policy reports on issues of economics of education for ministries and other public bodies such as the German Federal Employment Agency.
  • RWI has designed several surveys of individuals and firms. Together with IAB (Institut für Arbeitsmarkt- und Berufsforschung), DIE (Deutsches Institut für Erwachsenenbildung) and infas – Institut für angewandte Sozialwissenschaft, RWI has, for example, established a longitudinal linked-employer-employee dataset on lifelong learning. The data have been made available to the public (for further information see


Promotion of Young Researchers