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Employment in Poland 2007: Security on flexible labour market

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Author Info

  • Bukowski, Maciej
  • Lewandowski, Piotr
  • Koloch, Grzegorz
  • Baranowska, Anna
  • Magda, Iga
  • Szydlowski, Arkadiusz
  • Bober, Magda
  • Bieliński, Jacek
  • Zawistowski, Julian
  • Sarzalska, Malgorzata

Abstract

This Report is a third in the series Employment in Poland. It consists of four Parts, devoted to empirical analysis of the impact of macroeconomic shocks on EU New Member States labour markets‘ in 1996-2006; utilization of flexible forms of employment on Polish labor market, determinants of wages and wage inequalities in Poland; effectiveness of ALMP in Poland, respectively. In Part I, we present how the cyclical upturn propagated on Polish labour market in 2003-2007 and how the performance of that market evolved relatively to other EU countries. Then we apply a panel SVECM to study propagation of macroeconomic shocks in eight CEE countries which joined the EU in 2004. We show that demand side shocks (foreign demand and labour demand shocks) were of foremost importance to unemployment and employment fluctuations in the region. At the same time, we argue that the wage shocks, thought of as wage rigidities, were important internal disturbances affecting the developments on the labour markets in the region. Part II is devoted to atypical forms of labour employment. We show that in all CEE countries the incidence of nonstandard employment arrangements is much lower than in Western Europe. Although Poland stands out in the whole EU with its dynamic spread of temporary employment and integration of temporary work agencies in the functioning of the labour market, in general the potential of atypical employment in Poland and other CEE is largely unfulfilled when it comes to work- life balance or supporting the economic activity of people who find it difficult to work full-time due to age or health reasons. In case of Poland, we study in more detailed way the legal, infrastructural and tax-related factors affecting the utilisation of nonstandard forms of employment. In Part III, we study wage developments in Poland from macro- and micro-perspective alike. We argue that wage growth in Poland exhibited a significant inertia during the transition period. We find that the concurrent rise of wage inequalities in Poland was due to the fact that rapid technological progress favoured some professional and social groups more than others. The increasing return on formal education and rising premiums on work in managerial positions as well as increasingly diverse individual and market characteristics of Polish workers seem to play the key role. The public sector stands out with higher wage compression than private sector. We show also that, in international comparison, the gender wage gap in Poland is relatively small. Notwithstanding the above, even if differences in individual and employer characteristics as well as working time are taken into consideration, women still earn about ten percent less than men. Part IV focuses active labour market policies (ALMP). We assess the ALMP spending and structure in Poland and we use the survey, conducted for the purposes of this Report, to study to effectiveness of ALMP. To our knowledge, it is the first attempt at producing a rigorous and comprehensive evaluation of ALMP effectiveness in Poland in the recent years. Applying Propensity Score Matching, we find that intervention and public works turn out to be completely inefficient when it comes to enhancing employment chances of the unemployed. At the same time, even for those programs that are characterised by positive net efficiency, such as internships and traineeships, the deadweight loss is also high, i.e. support is extended to groups whose situation is relatively good, whereas more difficult cases are neglected. Thus, the placement of ALMP participants in Poland is sub-optimal, which partly reflects very poor job broking and counseling done by PES. We complete the report with policy implications.

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Paper provided by University Library of Munich, Germany in its series MPRA Paper with number 14284.

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Date of creation: Mar 2008
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Handle: RePEc:pra:mprapa:14284

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Keywords: Poland; unemployment; employment; transition countries; labour market shocks; SVECM; wage rigidities; flexible forms of employment; wage inequalities; wage determinants; active labour market policy; ALMP effectiveness;

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