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Bidding for the unemployed: An application of mechanism design to welfare-to-work programs

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  • Onderstal, Sander

Abstract

This paper applies the theory of mechanism design to welfare-to-work programs. When procuring welfare-to-work projects to employment service providers, governments face the problems of adverse selection (the winning provider is not the most efficient one) and moral hazard (the winning provider shirks in its responsibility to reintegrate unemployed people). We compare the constant-reward second-price auction with the socially optimal mechanism and show that the auction generates social welfare that is close to the optimal mechanism, while requiring less information and weaker commitment.

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Bibliographic Info

Article provided by Elsevier in its journal European Economic Review.

Volume (Year): 53 (2009)
Issue (Month): 6 (August)
Pages: 715-722

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Handle: RePEc:eee:eecrev:v:53:y:2009:i:6:p:715-722

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Web page: http://www.elsevier.com/locate/eer

Related research

Keywords: Adverse selection Auctions Incentive contracts Moral hazard Welfare-to-work programs;

References

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  1. Paul Klemperer, 1999. "Auction Theory: A Guide to the Literature," Microeconomics 9903002, EconWPA.
  2. John G. Riley & William Samuelson, 1979. "Optimal Auctions," UCLA Economics Working Papers 152, UCLA Department of Economics.
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  4. Laffont, Jean-Jacques & Tirole, Jean, 1987. "Auctioning Incentive Contracts," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 95(5), pages 921-37, October.
  5. R. Preston McAfee & John McMillan, 1986. "Bidding for Contracts: A Principal-Agent Analysis," RAND Journal of Economics, The RAND Corporation, vol. 17(3), pages 326-338, Autumn.
  6. John Asker & Estelle Cantillon, 2008. "Properties of scoring auctions," RAND Journal of Economics, RAND Corporation, vol. 39(1), pages 69-85.
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  8. Ballard, Charles L & Shoven, John B & Whalley, John, 1985. "General Equilibrium Computations of the Marginal Welfare Costs of Taxes in the United States," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 75(1), pages 128-38, March.
  9. R. Preston McAfee & John McMillan, 1987. "Competition for Agency Contracts," RAND Journal of Economics, The RAND Corporation, vol. 18(2), pages 296-307, Summer.
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  11. repec:att:wimass:9123 is not listed on IDEAS
  12. Yeon-Koo Che, 1993. "Design Competition through Multidimensional Auctions," RAND Journal of Economics, The RAND Corporation, vol. 24(4), pages 668-680, Winter.
  13. James J. Heckman & Jeffrey A. Smith & Christopher Taber, 1996. "What Do Bureaucrats Do? The Effects of Performance Standards and Bureaucratic Preferences on Acceptance into the JTPA Program," NBER Working Papers 5535, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  14. Jean-Jacques Laffont & Jean Tirole, 1993. "A Theory of Incentives in Procurement and Regulation," MIT Press Books, The MIT Press, edition 1, volume 1, number 0262121743, December.
  15. Pierre Koning & S. Onderstal, 2004. "Auctioning incentive contracts; application to welfare-to-work programs," CPB Discussion Paper 38, CPB Netherlands Bureau for Economic Policy Analysis.
  16. Jochen Kluve & Christoph M. Schmidt, 2002. "Can training and employment subsidies combat European unemployment?," Economic Policy, CEPR;CES;MSH, vol. 17(35), pages 409-448, October.
  17. Productivity Commission, 2002. "Independent review of the Job Network," Labor and Demography 0210002, EconWPA.
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Cited by:
  1. Pierre Koning & Arthur van de Meerendonk, 2013. "The Impact of Scoring Weights on Price and Quality Outcomes: An Application to the Procurement of Welfare-to-Work Contracts," Tinbergen Institute Discussion Papers 13-066/V, Tinbergen Institute.
  2. Emiel Maasland & Sander Onderstal, 2006. "Going, Going, Gone! A Swift Tour of Auction Theory and its Applications," De Economist, Springer, vol. 154(2), pages 197-249, June.
  3. Pierre Koning & Arthur van de Meerendonk, 2013. "The Impact of Scoring Weights on Price and Quality Outcomes: An Application to the Procurement of Welfare-to-Work Contracts," Tinbergen Institute Discussion Papers 13-066/V, Tinbergen Institute.

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