Dr Christian Darko

Dr Christian Darko

Department of Management
Lecturer in Applied Business and Labour Economics

Contact details

Department of Management
Birmingham Business School
University of Birmingham
B15 2TT


  • PhD, University of Birmingham
  • MSc. Business Economics and Finance, University of Surrey
  • B.A. Economics, KNUST, Ghana


Christian joined the Birmingham Business School in 2017 as a lecturer in Applied Business and Labour Economics. Before joining Birmingham Business School, he worked as a teaching fellow in economics at King’s Business School, King’s College London. Christian received his PhD from the University of Birmingham and his MSc in Business Economics and Finance from the University of Surrey. His first degree in Economics is from Kwame Nkrumah University of Science and Technology, Ghana. 

His main research is on labour market outcomes and human capital development with focus on developing. Parts of his current research examines education, employment outcomes, and wellbeing among young people in developing countries.

Christian has extensive teaching experience at both the undergraduate and postgraduate levels. He is a Fellow of the Higher Education Academy.


  • Labour market policy and global enterprise (MSc)
  • Economics & Economic Policy for Business (Distance Learning)
  • International economy
  • Introduction to economics 


Christian’s research interests are mainly in labour economics and economics of education. His research is located around issues related to employment outcomes, educational mismatch, health and wellbeing in developing countries, and firm productivity. His research also looks at intergenerational transmission of inequality, gender and access to human capital development. 

Christian was recently awarded a grant by the British Academy/Leverhulme Trust to conduct a labour market study on transition from school-to-work in Ghana (https://www.birmingham.ac.uk/schools/business/research/research-projects/transition-from-school-to-work.aspx). Christian is also working with colleagues in the Business School and the University of Oxford on a funded research project in Ghana that examines the impact of commuting on employment and wellbeing.

Other activities

Year Abroad Tutor  


Recent publications


Wheatley, D (ed.), Atkinson, C, Hardill, I, Bayhan Karapinar, P, Metin Camgöz, S, Tayfur Ekmekci, O, Cockayne, A, Sotiropoulou, I, Smith, A, McBride, J, Sullivan, C, Harvey, H, Badger, A, Woodcock, J, Burgess, J, Connell, J, Raiden, A, Räisänen, C, Lawton, C, Warren, T, Sander, EJ, Rafferty, AE, Jordan, PJ, Fuchs, M, Rossen, A, Weyh, A, Wydra-Somaggio, G, Darko, C, Carmichael, F, Duberley, J, Abrokwa, K, Green, A, Bickerton, C, Madden, A, Bailey, C, Fletcher, L, Alfes, K & Porcellato, L 2019, Handbook of Research Methods on the Quality of Working Lives. Handbooks of Research Methods in Management, 1 edn, Edward Elgar, Cheltenham UK.


Vendrell-Herrero, F, Darko, C, Gomes, E & Lehman, D 2022, 'Home market economic development as a moderator of the self-selection and learning-by-exporting effects', Journal of International Business Studies. https://doi.org/10.1057/s41267-021-00481-8

Carmichael, F, Darko, C, Kanji, S & Vasilakos, N 2022, 'School closures and educational attainment in Ethiopia: can extra classes help children to catch up?', British Educational Research Journal. https://doi.org/10.1002/berj.3787

Carmichael, F, Darko, C, Kanji, S & Vasilakos, N 2022, 'The contribution of girls' longer hours in unpaid work to gender gaps in early adult employment: evidence from Ethiopia, India, Peru and Vietnam', Feminist Economics.

Darko, C, Vanino, E & Occhiali, G 2021, 'The Chinese are here: import penetration and firm productivity in sub-Saharan Africa', Journal of Development Studies. https://doi.org/10.1080/00220388.2021.1956468

Carmichael, F, Darko, C & Kanji, S 2021, 'Wage effects of educational mismatch and job search in Ghana and Kenya', Education Economics. https://doi.org/10.1080/09645292.2021.1900790

Carmichael, F, Darko, C & Vasilakos, N 2021, 'Well-being and employment of young people in Ethiopia, India, Peru and Vietnam Is work enough?', Development Policy Review. https://doi.org/10.1111/dpr.12565

Darko, C & Abrokwa, K 2020, 'Do you really need it? Educational mismatch and earnings in Ghana', Review of Development Economics. https://doi.org/10.1111/rode.12681

Darko, C & Carmichael, F 2020, 'Education of biological and fostered children in Ghana: the influence of relationships with the household head and household structure', Journal of International Development. https://doi.org/10.1002/jid.3465

Carmichael, F, Darko, C, Ercolani, M, Ozgen, C & Siebert, S 2020, 'Evidence on intergenerational income transmission using complete Dutch population data', Economics Letters, vol. 189, 108996. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.econlet.2020.108996

Vendrell-Herrero, F, Darko, C & Vaillant, Y 2020, 'Firm productivity and government contracts: the moderating role of corruption', Socio-Economic Planning Sciences. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.seps.2020.100899

Darko, C & Vasilakos, N 2020, 'Picking winners: an empirical analysis of the determinants of educational outcomes in India', British Educational Research Journal, vol. 46, no. 6, pp. 1445-1467. https://doi.org/10.1002/berj.3657

Carmichael, F, Darko, C & Vasilakos, N 2019, 'Health and wellbeing of young people in Ethiopia, India, Peru and Vietnam: life course impacts', Journal of Development Studies, vol. 56, no. 5, pp. 964-983. https://doi.org/10.1080/00220388.2019.1626835


Darko, C & Abrokwa, K 2019, Econometric analysis of educational mismatch and earnings using survey data from Ghana. in Handbook of Research Methods on The Quality of Working Lives. Handbooks of Research Methods in Management, Edward Elgar Publishing Ltd., pp. 235–252. https://doi.org/10.4337/9781788118774.00024

Working paper

Darko, C, Carmichael, F, Ercolani, M, Siebert, S & Ozgen, C 2019 'Evidence on intergenerational income transition using complete Dutch population data' IZA – Institute of Labor Economics. <https://papers.ssrn.com/sol3/papers.cfm?abstract_id=3475800 >

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