Daniel’s thesis empirically investigates the societal impacts of modern military conscription. It consists of three, self-contained, single-authored articles. All of them make use of administrative data and study Swedish peacetime conscription during the post Cold War era. Each article concerns effects on distinct aspects of society.

The first chapter, "Opportunity Costs and Conscription: An Unintended Progressive Tax?", studies the causal effect of (post 2000) conscription on labour market outcomes and educational attainment. Conscription increased post service unemployment in the short run. No significant overall effects on income or educational attainment are found. Further analysis suggest that it is the high ability individuals assigned as privates that are driving the results. The secondary costs of conscription plausibly arise from a discrepancy between the ability of the conscript (his opportunity cost) and the complexity of the tasks performed during service and training.

The second chapter, "Citizenship, Social Capital and the Role of Conscription: Evidence from Sweden", studies the causal effects of military service on civic engagement and social capital. The article studies two qualitatively very different conscription systems from two different eras, post 2000 and the early 1990s. The study finds no evidence of any causal effects of military service on civic engagement in either a selective-, or in a universal conscription setting.

The third chapter, "The Effect of Military Conscription on the Formation of Criminal Behaviour: Evidence from a Natural Experiment", studies the causal effect of (post 2000) conscription on criminal behaviour. The study finds overall crime increasing effects, primarily driven by increased theft. The study finds no support for increased overall violent behaviour or that the military context per se induces anti-social behaviour. Rather, some suggestive evidence for worsened labour market opportunities for some groups is documented as a plausible mechanism behind the crime increasing results.

We would like to thank Yann Algan at Sciences Po in Paris for an excellent and engaging discussion.

We would also like to express our sincerest congratulations to Daniel on his PhD and wish him all the best in his future endeavours!

About Daniel.