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Evaluating the efficiency of the ESF — What can we learn from the German experience?


  • Michael Rothgang

    () (Rheinisch-Westfälisches Institut für Wirtschaftsforschung, Essen, Germany)


In Europe, the new member states face the challenge to implement and evaluate EU-funded policies. This paper sketches the experiences in evaluating policy instruments funded by the European Social Fund (ESF) in Germany and discusses lessons to be learned from the comprehensive evaluation of ESF-funded policy measures in Germany in the programming period 2000–2006. It presents the matching procedure we used to estimate the net effect of the projects scrutinised. The experiences from the evaluation not merely comprise the methodological aspect (how to evaluate effectiveness and efficiency of labour-market policies), but also consequences that can be drawn in respect to the institutional background.

Suggested Citation

  • Michael Rothgang, 2008. "Evaluating the efficiency of the ESF — What can we learn from the German experience?," Society and Economy, Akadémiai Kiadó, Hungary, vol. 30(2), pages 227-244, December.
  • Handle: RePEc:aka:soceco:v:30:y:2008:i:2:p:227-244
    Note: I thank the team for the comprehensive evaluation of ESF funded measures in Germany in the programming period 2000 to 2006 from RWI Essen and SÖSTRA (Berlin). Thanks also to Simon Decker for proof-reading the manuscript.

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