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Costing, Comparing and Competing Developing an Approach to the Benchmarking of Labour Market Regulation

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Author Info

  • Paul Benjamin
  • Jan Theron

    ()
    (Cheadle, Thompson & Haysom Inc Attorneys & Professor of Law, University of Cape Town)

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    Abstract

    Abstract: The World Bank’s Doing Business survey seeks to measure and compare the costs to business of various types of regulation, including labour regulation. As such it is an important driver of labour market ‘reform’ globally and in South Africa. It may also be encouraging a tendency of different systems of regulation to converge. Focussing on labour regulation, the study considers the validity of endeavours to measure labour regulation, and identifies a number of methodological problems that constrain any such endeavour. It then focuses specifically on the methodology utilised in the Doing Business survey, and its results for South Africa. It presents evidence that certain scores arrived at in the case of South Africa are incorrect, materially affecting South Africa’s ranking in terms of the survey. These errors can be attributed to shortcoming in the survey’s methodology as well as the simplistic conceptions of law reflected in the surveys. This finding does not imply endeavours to measure the costs of regulation are without value. Instead the study advocates developing different indicators to measure the impact of labour regulation, and drawing on existing data and research to arrive at more objective results.

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    File URL: http://www.dpru.uct.ac.za/sites/default/files/sites/default/files/DPRU%20WP07-131.pdf
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    Bibliographic Info

    Paper provided by University of Cape Town, Development Policy Research Unit in its series Working Papers with number 07131.

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    Length: 57 pages
    Date of creation: Nov 2007
    Date of revision:
    Publication status: Published in Working Paper Series by the Development Policy Research Unit, November2007, pages 1-57
    Handle: RePEc:ctw:wpaper:07131

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    Related research

    Keywords: South Africa: labour regulation; Doing Business Survey;

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    1. Sandrine Cazes & Alena Nesporova, 2004. "Labour markets in transition: balancing flexibility and security in Central and Eastern Europe," Revue de l'OFCE, Presses de Sciences-Po, vol. 91(5), pages 23-54.
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