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Costing, Comparing and Competing Developing an Approach to the Benchmarking of Labour Market Regulation

Author

Listed:
  • Paul Benjamin
  • Jan Theron

    () (Cheadle, Thompson & Haysom Inc Attorneys & Professor of Law, University of Cape Town)

Abstract

Abstract: The World Bank’s Doing Business survey seeks to measure and compare the costs to business of various types of regulation, including labour regulation. As such it is an important driver of labour market ‘reform’ globally and in South Africa. It may also be encouraging a tendency of different systems of regulation to converge. Focussing on labour regulation, the study considers the validity of endeavours to measure labour regulation, and identifies a number of methodological problems that constrain any such endeavour. It then focuses specifically on the methodology utilised in the Doing Business survey, and its results for South Africa. It presents evidence that certain scores arrived at in the case of South Africa are incorrect, materially affecting South Africa’s ranking in terms of the survey. These errors can be attributed to shortcoming in the survey’s methodology as well as the simplistic conceptions of law reflected in the surveys. This finding does not imply endeavours to measure the costs of regulation are without value. Instead the study advocates developing different indicators to measure the impact of labour regulation, and drawing on existing data and research to arrive at more objective results.

Suggested Citation

  • Paul Benjamin & Jan Theron, 2007. "Costing, Comparing and Competing Developing an Approach to the Benchmarking of Labour Market Regulation," Working Papers 07131, University of Cape Town, Development Policy Research Unit.
  • Handle: RePEc:ctw:wpaper:07131
    as

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    File URL: http://www.dpru.uct.ac.za/sites/default/files/image_tool/images/36/DPRU%20WP07-131.pdf
    File Function: First version, 2007
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    References listed on IDEAS

    as
    1. Giuseppe BERTOLA & Tito BOERI & Sandrine CAZES, 2000. "Employment protection in industrialized countries: The case for new indicators," International Labour Review, International Labour Organization, vol. 139(1), pages 57-72, March.
    2. Sandrine Cazes & Alena Nesporova, 2004. "Labour markets in transition: balancing flexibility and security in Central and Eastern Europe," Revue de l'OFCE, Presses de Sciences-Po, vol. 91(5), pages 23-54.
    Full references (including those not matched with items on IDEAS)

    More about this item

    Keywords

    South Africa: labour regulation; Doing Business Survey;

    JEL classification:

    • A1 - General Economics and Teaching - - General Economics

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