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Before and after the Hartz reforms: The performance of active labour market policy in Germany

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  • Jacobi, Lena
  • Kluve, Jochen

Abstract

"Having faced high unemployment rates for more than a decade, the German government implemented a comprehensive set of labour market reforms during the period 2003-2005. This paper describes the economic and institutional context of the German labour market before and after these so-called Hartz reforms. Focussing on active policy measures, we delineate the rationale for reform and its main principles. As preliminary results of programme evaluation studies post-reform have become available just now, we give a first assessment of the effectiveness of key elements of German active labour market policy before and after the Hartz reforms. The evidence indicates that the re-organisation of public employment services was mainly successful, with the exception of the outsourcing of services. Re-designing training programmes seems to have improved their effectiveness, while job creation schemes continue to be detrimental for participants' employment prospects. Wage subsidies and start-up subsidies show significantly positive effects. On balance, therefore, the reform seems to be moving the German labour market in the right direction." (Author's abstract, IAB-Doku) ((en))

Suggested Citation

  • Jacobi, Lena & Kluve, Jochen, 2007. "Before and after the Hartz reforms: The performance of active labour market policy in Germany," Zeitschrift für ArbeitsmarktForschung - Journal for Labour Market Research, Institut für Arbeitsmarkt- und Berufsforschung (IAB), Nürnberg [Institute for Employment Research, Nuremberg, Germany], vol. 40(1), pages 45-64.
  • Handle: RePEc:iab:iabzaf:v:2007:i:1:p:45-64
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    References listed on IDEAS

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