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The Design of Active Labour Market Policies. What Matters and What Doesn't ?

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  • Cockx, Bart

    (UNIVERSITE CATHOLIQUE DE LOUVAIN, Institut de Recherches Economiques et Sociales (IRES))

Abstract

A first objective of this paper is to emphasise the role of a correct diagnosis of unemployment persistence for the design of effective active labour market policies. A second is to stress the importance of adequate incentives for programme administrators of active labour market policies, and that this may well be more important than providing adequate incentives to the unemployed. To illustrate this, we summarise two case studies evaluating active labour market policies in Belgium. The first one evaluates a work experience programme for welfare recipients. The second one analyses the short-term effect of vocational training programmes for unemployed workers on the probability of leaving unemployment. Finally, we invite economists to think harder about well designed performance- standards systems. We provide some guidelines for this research programme.

Suggested Citation

  • Cockx, Bart, 1999. "The Design of Active Labour Market Policies. What Matters and What Doesn't ?," Discussion Papers (IRES - Institut de Recherches Economiques et Sociales) 1999035, Université catholique de Louvain, Institut de Recherches Economiques et Sociales (IRES).
  • Handle: RePEc:ctl:louvir:1999035
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    File URL: http://sites.uclouvain.be/econ/DP/IRES/9935.pdf
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    References listed on IDEAS

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    1. James J. Heckman & Carolyn Heinrich & Jeffrey Smith, 2002. "The Performance of Performance Standards," Journal of Human Resources, University of Wisconsin Press, vol. 37(4), pages 778-811.
    2. Courty, Pascal & Marschke, Gerald, 1997. "Measuring Government Performance: Lessons from a Federal Job-Training Program," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 87(2), pages 383-388, May.
    3. Dolton, Peter J & Makepeace, Gerald H & Treble, John G, 1994. "The Youth Training Scheme and the School-to-Work Transition," Oxford Economic Papers, Oxford University Press, vol. 46(4), pages 629-657, October.
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    5. Olivier Jean Blanchard & Peter Diamond, 1994. "Ranking, Unemployment Duration, and Wages," Review of Economic Studies, Oxford University Press, vol. 61(3), pages 417-434.
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    7. Rebecca M. Blank & Richard B. Freeman, 1994. "Evaluating the Connection between Social Protection and Economic Flexibility," NBER Chapters,in: Social Protection versus Economic Flexibility: Is There a Trade-Off?, pages 21-42 National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
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    More about this item

    Keywords

    Active labour market policies; unemployment; policy design;

    JEL classification:

    • H43 - Public Economics - - Publicly Provided Goods - - - Project Evaluation; Social Discount Rate
    • H53 - Public Economics - - National Government Expenditures and Related Policies - - - Government Expenditures and Welfare Programs
    • I38 - Health, Education, and Welfare - - Welfare, Well-Being, and Poverty - - - Government Programs; Provision and Effects of Welfare Programs
    • J24 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Demand and Supply of Labor - - - Human Capital; Skills; Occupational Choice; Labor Productivity
    • J68 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Mobility, Unemployment, Vacancies, and Immigrant Workers - - - Public Policy

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