Evaluating the impact of job training programmes in Latin America: evidence from IDB funded operations
Among active labour market programmes, job training is popular in Latin America as an attempt to help the labour market insertion of disadvantaged youth, and also as a way of providing skills to low-income groups to enable them to deal with the challenges of globalisation. This paper summarises the findings from the first rigorous set of evaluations of job training programmes in Latin America that were made in the context of a project undertaken by the Office of Evaluation and Oversight at the Inter-American Development Bank. This research was complemented by two independent impact evaluations of similar training programmes in Chile and Colombia. The paper reports the results of two evaluations with an experimental design (the Dominican Republic and Colombia), one with a natural experiment (Panama), and four non-experimental evaluations (Argentina, Chile, Peru, and Mexico). Overall, in contrast to the evidence for developed countries, the results suggest that employment effects range from modest to meaningful - increasing the employment rate by about 0 to 5 percentage points - although higher and significant for some groups, such as women in Colombia and Panama - with an impact of 6 to 12 percentage points in the employment rate. In most cases there are larger and significant impacts on job quality, measured by getting a formal job, having a contract, and/or receiving health insurance as a benefit.
Volume (Year): 1 (2009)
Issue (Month): 2 (June)
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