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

  • Jacobi, Lena
  • Kluve, Jochen
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    "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))

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    Article provided by Institut für Arbeitsmarkt- und Berufsforschung (IAB), Nürnberg [Institute for Employment Research, Nuremberg, Germany] in its journal Zeitschrift für ArbeitsmarktForschung – Journal for Labour Market Research.

    Volume (Year): 40 (2007)
    Issue (Month): 1 ()
    Pages: 45-64

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    Handle: RePEc:iab:iabzaf:v:2007:i:1:p:45-64
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    1. Bergemann, Annette & Fitzenberger, Bernd & Speckesser, Stefan, 2005. "Evaluating the Dynamic Employment Effects of Training Programs in East Germany Using Conditional Difference-in-Differences," IZA Discussion Papers 1848, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).
    2. Eva Reinowski & Birgit Schultz & Jürgen Wiemers, 2004. "Evaluation of Further Training Programmes with an Optimal Matching Algorithm," IWH Discussion Papers 188, Halle Institute for Economic Research.
    3. Michael Lechner & Ruth Miquel & Conny Wunsch, 2005. "The Curse and Blessing of Training the Unemployed in a Changing Economy: The Case of East Germany after Unification," University of St. Gallen Department of Economics working paper series 2005 2005-15, Department of Economics, University of St. Gallen.
    4. Eichler, Martin & Lechner, Michael, 1999. "An Evaluation of Public Employment Programmes in the East German State of Sachsen-Anhalt," IZA Discussion Papers 94, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).
    5. Hagen, Tobias, 2003. "Three Approaches to the Evaluation of Active Labour Market Policy in East Germany Using Regional Data," ZEW Discussion Papers 03-27, ZEW - Zentrum für Europäische Wirtschaftsforschung / Center for European Economic Research.
    6. Lechner, Michael, 1999. "Earnings and Employment Effects of Continuous Off-the-Job Training in East Germany after Unification," Journal of Business & Economic Statistics, American Statistical Association, vol. 17(1), pages 74-90, January.
    7. Fitzenberger, Bernd & Speckesser, Stefan, 2005. "Employment Effects of the Provision of Specific Professional Skills and Techniques in Germany," IZA Discussion Papers 1868, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).
    8. Franz, Wolfgang, 2000. "Neues von der NAIRU?," ZEW Discussion Papers 00-41, ZEW - Zentrum für Europäische Wirtschaftsforschung / Center for European Economic Research.
    9. Lechner, Michael, 1996. "An Evaluation of Public Sector Sponsored Continuous Vocational Training Programs in East Germany," Discussion Papers 539, Institut fuer Volkswirtschaftslehre und Statistik, Abteilung fuer Volkswirtschaftslehre.
    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. Eva Reinowski & Birgit Schultz & Jürgen Wiemers, 2003. "Evaluation von Maßnahmen der aktiven Arbeitsmarktpolitik mit Hilfe eines iterativen Matching-Algorithmus - Eine Fallstudie über langzeitarbeitslose Maßnahmeteilnehmer in Sachsen," IWH Discussion Papers 173, Halle Institute for Economic Research.
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