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The Design of Active Labour Market Policies. What Matters and What Doesn't ?

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  • Cockx, Bart

    (UNIVERSITE CATHOLIQUE DE LOUVAIN, Institut de Recherches Economiques et Sociales (IRES))

Abstract

A first objective of this paper is to emphasise the role of a correct diagnosis of unemployment persistence for the design of effective active labour market policies. A second is to stress the importance of adequate incentives for programme administrators of active labour market policies, and that this may well be more important than providing adequate incentives to the unemployed. To illustrate this, we summarise two case studies evaluating active labour market policies in Belgium. The first one evaluates a work experience programme for welfare recipients. The second one analyses the short-term effect of vocational training programmes for unemployed workers on the probability of leaving unemployment. Finally, we invite economists to think harder about well designed performance- standards systems. We provide some guidelines for this research programme.

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Paper provided by Université catholique de Louvain, Institut de Recherches Economiques et Sociales (IRES) in its series Discussion Papers (IRES - Institut de Recherches Economiques et Sociales) with number 1999035.

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Length: 21
Date of creation: 01 Dec 1999
Date of revision:
Handle: RePEc:ctl:louvir:1999035

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Keywords: Active labour market policies; unemployment; policy design;

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  1. Courty, Pascal & Marschke, Gerald, 1997. "Measuring Government Performance: Lessons from a Federal Job-Training Program," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 87(2), pages 383-88, May.
  2. Stephen Machin & Alan Manning, 1998. "The causes and consequences of long-term unemployment in Europe," LSE Research Online Documents on Economics 20255, London School of Economics and Political Science, LSE Library.
  3. Cockx, Bart & Dejemeppe, Muriel, 2002. "Duration Dependence in the Exit Rate out of Unemployment in Belgium: Is It True or Spurious?," IZA Discussion Papers 632, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).
  4. Eichler, Martin & Lechner, Michael, 2002. "An evaluation of public employment programmes in the East German State of Sachsen-Anhalt," Labour Economics, Elsevier, vol. 9(2), pages 143-186, April.
  5. Ridder, G, 1986. "An Event History Approach to the Evaluation of Training, Recruitment and Employment Programmes," Journal of Applied Econometrics, John Wiley & Sons, Ltd., vol. 1(2), pages 109-26, April.
  6. E Berman & J Bound & Stephen Machin, 1997. "Implications of Skill-Biased Technological Change: International Evidence," CEP Discussion Papers dp0367, Centre for Economic Performance, LSE.
  7. Bart Cockx & Geert Ridder, 2000. "Social Employment Of Welfare Recipients In Belgium: An Evaluation," Economics Working Paper Archive 425, The Johns Hopkins University,Department of Economics.
  8. Nichols, Albert L & Zeckhauser, Richard J, 1982. "Targeting Transfers through Restrictions on Recipients," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 72(2), pages 372-77, May.
  9. Edin, P-A. & Holmlund, B., 1990. "Unemployment, Vacancies And Labour Market Programmes: Swedish Evidence," Papers 1990j, Uppsala - Working Paper Series.
  10. Rebecca M. Blank & Richard B. Freeman, 1994. "Evaluating the Connection between Social Protection and Economic Flexibility," NBER Chapters, in: Social Protection versus Economic Flexibility: Is There a Trade-Off?, pages 21-42 National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  11. James J. Heckman & Carolyn Heinrich & Jeffrey Smith, 2002. "The Performance of Performance Standards," Journal of Human Resources, University of Wisconsin Press, vol. 37(4), pages 778-811.
  12. DREZE, Jacques H. & SNEESSENS, Henri, 1994. "Technical Development, Competition from Low-Wage Economies and Low-Skilled Unemployment," CORE Discussion Papers 1994036, Université catholique de Louvain, Center for Operations Research and Econometrics (CORE).
  13. Olivier Jean Blanchard, 1991. "Wage Bargaining and Unemployment Persistence," NBER Working Papers 3664, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  14. James Heckman, 1997. "Instrumental Variables: A Study of Implicit Behavioral Assumptions Used in Making Program Evaluations," Journal of Human Resources, University of Wisconsin Press, vol. 32(3), pages 441-462.
  15. Blanchard, Olivier Jean & Diamond, Peter A, 1994. "Ranking, Unemployment Duration, and Wages," Review of Economic Studies, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 61(3), pages 417-34, July.
  16. Bart Cockx & Isabelle Bardoulat, 2000. "Vocational Training: Does it speed up the Transition Rate out of Unemployment?," Tinbergen Institute Discussion Papers 00-016/3, Tinbergen Institute.
  17. Van der Linden, Bruno & Dor, Eric, 1998. "The net effect of unemployment benefits, sanctions and training on aggregate unemployment outflows," Discussion Papers (IRES - Institut de Recherches Economiques et Sociales) 2000020, Université catholique de Louvain, Institut de Recherches Economiques et Sociales (IRES), revised 07 Sep 2000.
  18. Shadman-Mehta, Fatemeh & Sneessens, Henri R., 1998. "Demand-Supply Interactions and Unemployment Dynamics: Can there be Path Dependency ? The Case of Belgium, 1955-1994," Discussion Papers (IRES - Institut de Recherches Economiques et Sociales) 1998017, Université catholique de Louvain, Institut de Recherches Economiques et Sociales (IRES).
  19. Joshua Angrist, 1988. "Grouped Data Estimation and Testing in Simple Labor Supply Models," Working Papers 614, Princeton University, Department of Economics, Industrial Relations Section..
  20. Sneessens, Henri, 1993. "Courbe de Beveridge et demande de qualifications," Discussion Papers (IRES - Institut de Recherches Economiques et Sociales) 1993019, Université catholique de Louvain, Institut de Recherches Economiques et Sociales (IRES).
  21. Francesco Daveri & Guido Tabellini, 2000. "Unemployment, growth and taxation in industrial countries," Economic Policy, CEPR & CES & MSH, vol. 15(30), pages 47-104, 04.
  22. van den Berg, Gerard J & van Ours, Jan C, 1996. "Unemployment Dynamics and Duration Dependence," Journal of Labor Economics, University of Chicago Press, vol. 14(1), pages 100-125, January.
  23. Bonnal, Liliane & Fougere, Denis & Serandon, Anne, 1997. "Evaluating the Impact of French Employment Policies on Individual Labour Market Histories," Review of Economic Studies, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 64(4), pages 683-713, October.
  24. Dolton, Peter J & Makepeace, Gerald H & Treble, John G, 1994. "The Youth Training Scheme and the School-to-Work Transition," Oxford Economic Papers, Oxford University Press, vol. 46(4), pages 629-57, October.
  25. Paul Geroski & Paul Gregg & John van Reenen, 1995. "Market Imperfections and Employment," OECD Jobs Study Working Papers 5, OECD Publishing.
  26. Blackorby, Charles & Donaldson, David, 1988. "Cash versus Kind, Self-selection, and Efficient Transfers," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 78(4), pages 691-700, September.
  27. Holger Feist & Ronnie Schöb, 1999. "Workfare in Germany and the Problem of Vertical Fiscal Externalities," CESifo Working Paper Series 185, CESifo Group Munich.
  28. Dreze, Jacques H., 1997. "Walras--Keynes equilibria coordination and macroeconomics," European Economic Review, Elsevier, vol. 41(9), pages 1735-1762, December.
  29. Couch, Kenneth A, 1992. "New Evidence on the Long-Term Effects of Employment Training Programs," Journal of Labor Economics, University of Chicago Press, vol. 10(4), pages 380-88, October.
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