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The effect of labor market regulations on training behavior and quality: the German labor market reform as a natural experiment

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Author Info

  • Anika Jansen

    (German Federal Institute for Vocational Education and Training (BiBB), Bonn)

  • Mirjam Strupler Leiser

    (University of Bern, Centre for Research in Economics of Education)

  • Felix Wenzelmann

    (German Federal Institute for Vocational Education and Training (BiBB), Bonn)

  • Stefan C. Wolter

    ()
    (University of Bern, CESifo & IZA)

Abstract

Labor market frictions are seen in many extensions of the classical human capital theory as a prerequisite for firms financing general training. The labor market reforms in Germany at the beginning of the millennium have therefore been seen by many as a danger to the firms’ willingness to support the apprenticeship training system. This paper analyzes the training strategies German firms deployed to cope with the greater labor market flexibility as a result of the labor market reform. Switzerland where no reforms had taken place serves as the counterfactual. The results show that firms successfully reduced the net-costs of training by involving apprentices in more work and reducing non-productive tasks, like practicing. Contrary to the widespread fear, this adapted training strategy resulted also in a substantial increase in work-related competencies and productivity of apprentices.

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File URL: http://repec.business.uzh.ch/RePEc/iso/leadinghouse/0083_lhwpaper.pdf
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Bibliographic Info

Paper provided by University of Zurich, Institute for Strategy and Business Economics (ISU) in its series Economics of Education Working Paper Series with number 0083.

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Length: 24 pages
Date of creation: Dec 2012
Date of revision:
Handle: RePEc:iso:educat:0083

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Related research

Keywords: Apprenticeship training; difference-in-differences matching estimator; cost-benefit; labor market reforms;

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  1. Acemoglu, Daron & Pischke, Jorn-Steffen, 1999. "Beyond Becker: Training in Imperfect Labour Markets," Economic Journal, Royal Economic Society, vol. 109(453), pages F112-42, February.
  2. Muehlemann, Samuel & Wolter, Stefan C., 2011. "Firm-sponsored training and poaching externalities in regional labor markets," Regional Science and Urban Economics, Elsevier, vol. 41(6), pages 560-570.
  3. Danielle Venn, 2009. "Legislation, Collective Bargaining and Enforcement: Updating the OECD Employment Protection Indicators," OECD Social, Employment and Migration Working Papers 89, OECD Publishing.
  4. Acemoglu, D. & Pischke, J.S., 1997. "The Structure of Wages and Investment in General Training," Working papers 97-24, Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT), Department of Economics.
  5. Heckman, James J & Ichimura, Hidehiko & Todd, Petra E, 1997. "Matching as an Econometric Evaluation Estimator: Evidence from Evaluating a Job Training Programme," Review of Economic Studies, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 64(4), pages 605-54, October.
  6. Daron Acemoglu & Jorn-Steffen Pischke, 1996. "Why Do Firms Train? Theory and Evidence," NBER Working Papers 5605, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  7. Regina Dionisius & Samuel Muehlemann & Harald Pfeifer & Günter Walden & Felix Wenzelmann & Stefan C. Wolter, 2009. "Costs and Benefits of Apprenticeship Training. A Comparison of Germany and Switzerland," Applied Economics Quarterly (formerly: Konjunkturpolitik), Duncker & Humblot, Berlin, vol. 55(1), pages 7-37.
  8. Mühlemann, Samuel & Ryan, Paul & Wolter, Stefan C., 2011. "Monopsony Power, Pay Structure and Training," IZA Discussion Papers 5587, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).
  9. Marius R. Busemeyer & Renate Neubäumer & Harald Pfeifer & Felix Wenzelmann, 2012. "The transformation of the G erman vocational training regime: evidence from firms’ training behaviour," Industrial Relations Journal, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 43(6), pages 572-591, November.
  10. Alberto Abadie & David Drukker & Jane Leber Herr & Guido W. Imbens, 2004. "Implementing matching estimators for average treatment effects in Stata," Stata Journal, StataCorp LP, vol. 4(3), pages 290-311, September.
  11. Wolter, Stefan C. & Ryan, Paul, 2011. "Apprenticeship," Handbook of the Economics of Education, Elsevier.
  12. Edwin Leuven, 2005. "The Economics of Private Sector Training: A Survey of the Literature," Journal of Economic Surveys, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 19(1), pages 91-111, 02.
  13. Muehlemann, Samuel & Pfeifer, Harald & Walden, Günter & Wenzelmann, Felix & Wolter, Stefan C., 2010. "The financing of apprenticeship training in the light of labor market regulations," Labour Economics, Elsevier, vol. 17(5), pages 799-809, October.
  14. Gary S. Becker, 1962. "Investment in Human Capital: A Theoretical Analysis," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 70, pages 9.
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