IDEAS home Printed from https://ideas.repec.org/
MyIDEAS: Log in (now much improved!) to save this article

Start-up subsidies for the unemployed: Long-term evidence and effect heterogeneity

Listed author(s):
  • Caliendo, Marco
  • Künn, Steffen

Turning unemployment into self-employment has become an increasingly important part of active labor market policies (ALMP) in many OECD countries. Germany is a good example where the spending on start-up subsidies for the unemployed accounted for nearly 17% of the total spending on ALMP in 2004. In contrast to other programs--like vocational training, job creation schemes, or wage subsidies--the empirical evidence on the effectiveness of such schemes is still scarce; especially regarding long-term effects and effect heterogeneity. This paper aims to close this gap. We use administrative and survey data from a large sample of participants in two distinct start-up programs and a control group of unemployed individuals. We find that over 80% of participants are integrated in the labor market and have relatively high labor income five years after start-up. Additionally, participants are much more satisfied with their current occupational situation compared to previous jobs. Based on propensity score matching methods we estimate the long-term effects of the programs against non-participation and take great care in assessing the sensitivity of our results with respect to deviations from the identifying assumption. Our results turn out to be robust and show that both programs are effective with respect to income and employment outcomes in the long-run, i.e., five years after start-up. Moreover, we consider effect heterogeneity with respect to several dimensions and show that start-up subsidies for the unemployed tend to be most effective for disadvantaged groups in the labor market.

If you experience problems downloading a file, check if you have the proper application to view it first. In case of further problems read the IDEAS help page. Note that these files are not on the IDEAS site. Please be patient as the files may be large.

File URL: http://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S0047-2727(10)00163-5
Download Restriction: Full text for ScienceDirect subscribers only

As the access to this document is restricted, you may want to look for a different version under "Related research" (further below) or search for a different version of it.

Article provided by Elsevier in its journal Journal of Public Economics.

Volume (Year): 95 (2011)
Issue (Month): 3-4 (April)
Pages: 311-331

as
in new window

Handle: RePEc:eee:pubeco:v:95:y:2011:i:3-4:p:311-331
Contact details of provider: Web page: http://www.elsevier.com/locate/inca/505578

References listed on IDEAS
Please report citation or reference errors to , or , if you are the registered author of the cited work, log in to your RePEc Author Service profile, click on "citations" and make appropriate adjustments.:

as
in new window


  1. Richard K. Crump & V. Joseph Hotz & Guido W. Imbens & Oscar A. Mitnik, 2009. "Dealing with limited overlap in estimation of average treatment effects," Biometrika, Biometrika Trust, vol. 96(1), pages 187-199.
  2. Conny Wunsch & Michael Lechner, 2008. "What Did All the Money Do? On the General Ineffectiveness of Recent West German Labour Market Programmes," Kyklos, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 61(1), pages 134-174, 02.
  3. David Card & Jochen Kluve & Andrea Weber, 2010. "Active Labour Market Policy Evaluations: A Meta-Analysis," Economic Journal, Royal Economic Society, vol. 120(548), pages 452-477, November.
  4. A. Smith, Jeffrey & E. Todd, Petra, 2005. "Does matching overcome LaLonde's critique of nonexperimental estimators?," Journal of Econometrics, Elsevier, vol. 125(1-2), pages 305-353.
  5. Andrea Ichino & Fabrizia Mealli & Tommaso Nannicini, 2008. "From temporary help jobs to permanent employment: what can we learn from matching estimators and their sensitivity?," Journal of Applied Econometrics, John Wiley & Sons, Ltd., vol. 23(3), pages 305-327.
  6. Martin, John P. & Grubb, David, 2001. "What works and for whom: a review of OECD countries' experiences with active labour market policies," Working Paper Series 2001:14, IFAU - Institute for Evaluation of Labour Market and Education Policy.
  7. Michael Lechner & Ruth Miquel & Conny Wunsch, 2011. "Long‐Run Effects Of Public Sector Sponsored Training In West Germany," Journal of the European Economic Association, European Economic Association, vol. 9(4), pages 742-784, 08.
  8. Stephan Gesine, 2008. "The Effects of Active Labor Market Programs in Germany: An Investigation Using Different Definitions of Non-Treatment," Journal of Economics and Statistics (Jahrbuecher fuer Nationaloekonomie und Statistik), De Gruyter, vol. 228(5-6), pages 586-611, October.
  9. Almeida, Rita K. & Galasso, Emanuela, 2007. "Jump-Starting Self-Employment? Evidence among Welfare Participants in Argentina," IZA Discussion Papers 2902, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).
  10. Pfeiffer, Friedhelm & Reize, Frank, 2000. "Business start-ups by the unemployed -- an econometric analysis based on firm data," Labour Economics, Elsevier, vol. 7(5), pages 629-663, September.
  11. Black, Dan A. & Smith, J.A.Jeffrey A., 2004. "How robust is the evidence on the effects of college quality? Evidence from matching," Journal of Econometrics, Elsevier, vol. 121(1-2), pages 99-124.
  12. Marco Caliendo & Reinhard Hujer, 2006. "The microeconometric estimation of treatment effects—An overview," AStA Advances in Statistical Analysis, Springer;German Statistical Society, vol. 90(1), pages 199-215, March.
  13. Tommaso Nannicini, 2007. "Simulation-based sensitivity analysis for matching estimators," Stata Journal, StataCorp LP, vol. 7(3), pages 334-350, September.
  14. Caliendo, Marco, 2009. "Income Support Systems, Labor Market Policies and Labor Supply: The German Experience," IZA Discussion Papers 4665, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).
  15. Christopher J. O'Leary, 1999. "Promoting Self Employment Among the Unemployed in Hungary and Poland," Upjohn Working Papers and Journal Articles 99-55, W.E. Upjohn Institute for Employment Research.
  16. Marco Caliendo & Frank Fossen & Alexander Kritikos, 2009. "Risk attitudes of nascent entrepreneurs–new evidence from an experimentally validated survey," Small Business Economics, Springer, vol. 32(2), pages 153-167, February.
  17. Guido W. Imbens & Jeffrey M. Wooldridge, 2009. "Recent Developments in the Econometrics of Program Evaluation," Journal of Economic Literature, American Economic Association, vol. 47(1), pages 5-86, March.
  18. Cressy, Robert, 1996. "Are Business Startups Debt-Rationed?," Economic Journal, Royal Economic Society, vol. 106(438), pages 1253-1270, September.
  19. Sascha O. Becker & Marco Caliendo, 2007. "Sensitivity analysis for average treatment effects," Stata Journal, StataCorp LP, vol. 7(1), pages 71-83, February.
  20. Richard Blundell & Lorraine Dearden & Barbara Sianesi, 2003. "Evaluating the impact of education on earnings in the UK: Models, methods and results from the NCDS," IFS Working Papers W03/20, Institute for Fiscal Studies.
  21. repec:iab:iabzaf:v:37:i:2:p:146-175 is not listed on IDEAS
  22. Michael Fritsch, 2008. "How does new business formation affect regional development? Introduction to the special issue," Small Business Economics, Springer, vol. 30(1), pages 1-14, January.
  23. James Heckman & Hidehiko Ichimura & Jeffrey Smith & Petra Todd, 1998. "Characterizing Selection Bias Using Experimental Data," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 66(5), pages 1017-1098, September.
  24. Dar, Amit & Gill, Indermit S, 1998. "Evaluating Retraining Programs in OECD Countries: Lessons Learned," World Bank Research Observer, World Bank Group, vol. 13(1), pages 79-101, February.
  25. Marco Caliendo & Sabine Kopeinig, 2008. "Some Practical Guidance For The Implementation Of Propensity Score Matching," Journal of Economic Surveys, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 22(1), pages 31-72, 02.
  26. Stephan, Gesine & Pahnke, André, 2008. "A pairwise comparison of the effectiveness of selected active labour market programmes in Germany," IAB Discussion Paper 200829, Institut für Arbeitsmarkt- und Berufsforschung (IAB), Nürnberg [Institute for Employment Research, Nuremberg, Germany].
  27. Caliendo, Marco & Hujer, Reinhard & Thomsen, Stephan L., 2005. "The Employment Effects of Job Creation Schemes in Germany: A Microeconometric Evaluation," IZA Discussion Papers 1512, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).
  28. Clark, Kenneth & Drinkwater, Stephen, 2000. "Pushed out or pulled in? Self-employment among ethnic minorities in England and Wales," Labour Economics, Elsevier, vol. 7(5), pages 603-628, September.
  29. Barbara Sianesi, 2002. "An evaluation of the Swedish system of active labour market programmes in the 1990s," IFS Working Papers W02/01, Institute for Fiscal Studies.
  30. Jochen Kluve & Christoph M. Schmidt, 2002. "Can training and employment subsidies combat European unemployment?," Economic Policy, CEPR;CES;MSH, vol. 17(35), pages 409-448, October.
  31. Hans J. Baumgartner & Marco Caliendo, 2008. "Turning Unemployment into Self-Employment: Effectiveness of Two Start-Up Programmes," Oxford Bulletin of Economics and Statistics, Department of Economics, University of Oxford, vol. 70(3), pages 347-373, 06.
  32. Amartya Sen, 1997. "Inequality, Unemployment and Contemporary Europe," STICERD - Development Economics Papers - From 2008 this series has been superseded by Economic Organisation and Public Policy Discussion Papers 07, Suntory and Toyota International Centres for Economics and Related Disciplines, LSE.
  33. Begona Cueto & Javier Mato, 2006. "An analysis of self-employment subsidies with duration models," Applied Economics, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 38(1), pages 23-32.
  34. repec:adr:anecst:y:2008:i:91-92:p:15 is not listed on IDEAS
  35. Betcherman, Gordon & Olivas, Karina & Dar, Amit, 2004. "Impacts of active labor market programs : new evidence from evaluations with particular attention to developing and transition countries," Social Protection and Labor Policy and Technical Notes 29142, The World Bank.
  36. A. D. Roy, 1951. "Some Thoughts On The Distribution Of Earnings," Oxford Economic Papers, Oxford University Press, vol. 3(2), pages 135-146.
  37. Carling, Kenneth & Gustafson, Lena, 1999. "Self-employment grants vs. subsidized employment: Is there a difference in the re-unemployment risk?," Working Paper Series 1999:6, IFAU - Institute for Evaluation of Labour Market and Education Policy.
  38. Heckman, James J. & Lalonde, Robert J. & Smith, Jeffrey A., 1999. "The economics and econometrics of active labor market programs," Handbook of Labor Economics,in: O. Ashenfelter & D. Card (ed.), Handbook of Labor Economics, edition 1, volume 3, chapter 31, pages 1865-2097 Elsevier.
  39. Guido W. Imbens, 2004. "Nonparametric Estimation of Average Treatment Effects Under Exogeneity: A Review," The Review of Economics and Statistics, MIT Press, vol. 86(1), pages 4-29, February.
  40. Nigel Meager & Peter Bates & Marc Cowling, 2003. "An Evaluation of Business Start-Up Support for Young People," National Institute Economic Review, National Institute of Economic and Social Research, vol. 186(1), pages 59-72, October.
  41. Dar, Amit & Tzannatos, Zafiris, 1999. "Active labor market programs: a review of the evidence from evaluations," Social Protection and Labor Policy and Technical Notes 20116, The World Bank.
  42. Dunn, Thomas & Holtz-Eakin, Douglas, 2000. "Financial Capital, Human Capital, and the Transition to Self-Employment: Evidence from Intergenerational Links," Journal of Labor Economics, University of Chicago Press, vol. 18(2), pages 282-305, April.
  43. Núria Rodríguez-Planas, 2010. "Channels through which Public Employment Services and Small Business Assistance Programmes Work," Oxford Bulletin of Economics and Statistics, Department of Economics, University of Oxford, vol. 72(4), pages 458-485, 08.
  44. Peter Whiteford & Willem Adema, 2007. "What Works Best in Reducing Child Poverty: A Benefit or Work Strategy?," OECD Social, Employment and Migration Working Papers 51, OECD Publishing.
  45. Thomas Dunn & Douglas Holtz-Eakin, 1996. "Financial Capital, Human Capital, and the Transition to Self-Employment:Evidence from Intergenerational Links," NBER Working Papers 5622, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
Full references (including those not matched with items on IDEAS)

This item is not listed on Wikipedia, on a reading list or among the top items on IDEAS.

When requesting a correction, please mention this item's handle: RePEc:eee:pubeco:v:95:y:2011:i:3-4:p:311-331. See general information about how to correct material in RePEc.

For technical questions regarding this item, or to correct its authors, title, abstract, bibliographic or download information, contact: (Dana Niculescu)

If you have authored this item and are not yet registered with RePEc, we encourage you to do it here. This allows to link your profile to this item. It also allows you to accept potential citations to this item that we are uncertain about.

If references are entirely missing, you can add them using this form.

If the full references list an item that is present in RePEc, but the system did not link to it, you can help with this form.

If you know of missing items citing this one, you can help us creating those links by adding the relevant references in the same way as above, for each refering item. If you are a registered author of this item, you may also want to check the "citations" tab in your profile, as there may be some citations waiting for confirmation.

Please note that corrections may take a couple of weeks to filter through the various RePEc services.

This information is provided to you by IDEAS at the Research Division of the Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis using RePEc data.