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Unemployed and their caseworkers: should they be friends or foes?

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  • Stefanie Behncke
  • Markus Frˆlich
  • Michael Lechner

Abstract

In many countries, caseworkers in public employment offices have dual roles of counselling and monitoring unemployed people. These roles often conflict, which results in important caseworker heterogeneity: some consider providing services to their clients and satisfying their demands as their primary task. However, others may pursue their own strategies, even against the will of the unemployed person. They may assign jobs and labour market programmes without the consent of the unemployed person. On the basis of a very detailed "linked jobseeker-caseworker" data set for Switzerland, we investigate the effects of caseworkers' co-operativeness on the probabilities of employment of their clients. Modified statistical matching methods reveal that caseworkers who place less emphasis on a co-operative and harmonic relationship with their clients increase their chances of employment in the short and medium term. Copyright (c) 2009 Royal Statistical Society.

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  • Stefanie Behncke & Markus Frˆlich & Michael Lechner, 2010. "Unemployed and their caseworkers: should they be friends or foes?," Journal of the Royal Statistical Society Series A, Royal Statistical Society, vol. 173(1), pages 67-92.
  • Handle: RePEc:bla:jorssa:v:173:y:2010:i:1:p:67-92
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    1. repec:bla:scandj:v:119:y:2017:i:3:p:541-570 is not listed on IDEAS
    2. Jonas Maibom & Michael Rosholm & Michael Svarer, 2017. "Experimental Evidence on the Effects of Early Meetings and Activation," Scandinavian Journal of Economics, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 119(3), pages 541-570, July.
    3. Frölich, Markus & Huber, Martin & Wiesenfarth, Manuel, 2017. "The finite sample performance of semi- and non-parametric estimators for treatment effects and policy evaluation," Computational Statistics & Data Analysis, Elsevier, vol. 115(C), pages 91-102.
    4. Huber, Martin & Lechner, Michael & Wunsch, Conny, 2010. "How to Control for Many Covariates? Reliable Estimators Based on the Propensity Score," IZA Discussion Papers 5268, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).
    5. Ehlert, Christoph, 2013. "Did Customers Benefit from the Reorganisation of Customer Management in German Employment Agencies?," Ruhr Economic Papers 462, RWI - Leibniz-Institut für Wirtschaftsforschung, Ruhr-University Bochum, TU Dortmund University, University of Duisburg-Essen.
    6. Margaretha Buurman & Robert Dur, 2012. "Incentives and the Sorting of Altruistic Agents into Street-Level Bureaucracies," Scandinavian Journal of Economics, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 114(4), pages 1318-1345, December.
    7. Althin, Rikard & Behrenz, Lars & Färe, Rolf & Grosskopf, Shawna & Mellander, Erik, 2010. "Swedish employment offices: A new model for evaluating effectiveness," European Journal of Operational Research, Elsevier, vol. 207(3), pages 1535-1544, December.
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    12. Rotger, Gabriel Pons & Gørtz, Mette & Storey, David J., 2012. "Assessing the effectiveness of guided preparation for new venture creation and performance: Theory and practice," Journal of Business Venturing, Elsevier, vol. 27(4), pages 506-521.
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    14. repec:tpr:restat:v:99:y:2017:i:1:p:180-183 is not listed on IDEAS
    15. Verónica Alaimo & Mariano Bosch & David S. Kaplan & Carmen Pagés & Laura Ripani, 2015. "Jobs for Growth," IDB Publications (Books), Inter-American Development Bank, number 90977, February.
    16. repec:wfo:wstudy:59029 is not listed on IDEAS
    17. Martin, John P., 2016. "Whither Activation Policies? Reflections for the Future," IZA Policy Papers 114, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).
    18. repec:spr:empeco:v:52:y:2017:i:4:d:10.1007_s00181-016-1117-1 is not listed on IDEAS
    19. Rainer Eppel & Helmut Mahringer & Andrea Weber, 2014. "Job Search Behaviour and Job Search Success of the Unemployed," WIFO Working Papers 471, WIFO.
    20. repec:wfo:monber:y:2017:i:6 is not listed on IDEAS
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    23. Martin Huber & Michael Lechner & Andreas Steinmayr, 2015. "Radius matching on the propensity score with bias adjustment: tuning parameters and finite sample behaviour," Empirical Economics, Springer, vol. 49(1), pages 1-31, August.
    24. Huber, Martin & Lechner, Michael & Wunsch, Conny, 2013. "The performance of estimators based on the propensity score," Journal of Econometrics, Elsevier, vol. 175(1), pages 1-21.
    25. Martin Huber & Michael Lechner & Giovanni Mellace, 2017. "Why Do Tougher Caseworkers Increase Employment? The Role of Program Assignment as a Causal Mechanism," The Review of Economics and Statistics, MIT Press, vol. 99(1), pages 180-183, March.

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    JEL classification:

    • C31 - Mathematical and Quantitative Methods - - Multiple or Simultaneous Equation Models; Multiple Variables - - - Cross-Sectional Models; Spatial Models; Treatment Effect Models; Quantile Regressions; Social Interaction Models
    • J68 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Mobility, Unemployment, Vacancies, and Immigrant Workers - - - Public Policy

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