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Norwegian Vocational Rehabilitation Programs: Improving Employability and Preventing Disability?


  • Westlie, Lars

    () (Ragnar Frisch Centre for Economic Research)


This paper investigates the effects of five different vocational rehabilitation (VR) programs on the hazard rates into employment, disability and temporarily withdrawals from the labor market for persons who face severe problems in re-entering the labor market, mostly due to medical problems. One of the main findings is that re-education into a new profession is an effective way to improve employability and prevent disability. Work training produces varying results and is more effective the more it resembles a real job. All programs, and in particular re-education, comes with a cost of increased VR duration. Finally, those with the worst initial employment prospects are the ones who benefit most from participation.

Suggested Citation

  • Westlie, Lars, 2008. "Norwegian Vocational Rehabilitation Programs: Improving Employability and Preventing Disability?," Memorandum 24/2008, Oslo University, Department of Economics.
  • Handle: RePEc:hhs:osloec:2008_024

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    References listed on IDEAS

    1. Gerfin, Michael & Lechner, Michael & Steiger, Heidi, 2005. "Does subsidised temporary employment get the unemployed back to work? Aneconometric analysis of two different schemes," Labour Economics, Elsevier, vol. 12(6), pages 807-835, December.
    2. Aakvik, Arild & Dahl, Svenn-Åge, 2004. "Transitions to Employment from Labour Market Enterprises in Norway," Working Papers in Economics 07/04, University of Bergen, Department of Economics.
    3. Markus Frölich & Almas Heshmati & Michael Lechner, 2004. "A microeconometric evaluation of rehabilitation of long-term sickness in Sweden," Journal of Applied Econometrics, John Wiley & Sons, Ltd., vol. 19(3), pages 375-396.
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    5. Raaum, Oddbjorn & Torp, Hege, 2002. "Labour market training in Norway--effect on earnings," Labour Economics, Elsevier, vol. 9(2), pages 207-247, April.
    6. Michael Lechner & Stephan Wiehler, 2007. "Does the Order and Timing of Active Labor Market Programs Matter?," University of St. Gallen Department of Economics working paper series 2007 2007-38, Department of Economics, University of St. Gallen.
    7. Knut Røed & Oddbjørn Raaum, 2006. "Do Labour Market Programmes Speed up the Return to Work?," Oxford Bulletin of Economics and Statistics, Department of Economics, University of Oxford, vol. 68(5), pages 541-568, October.
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    10. Røed, Knut & Westlie, Lars, 2007. "Unemployment Insurance in Welfare States: Soft Constraints and Mild Sanctions," IZA Discussion Papers 2877, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).
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    More about this item


    Vocational rehabilitation; program evaluation; disability; heterogeneous treatment effects; multivariate hazards;

    JEL classification:

    • C14 - Mathematical and Quantitative Methods - - Econometric and Statistical Methods and Methodology: General - - - Semiparametric and Nonparametric Methods: General
    • C15 - Mathematical and Quantitative Methods - - Econometric and Statistical Methods and Methodology: General - - - Statistical Simulation Methods: General
    • C41 - Mathematical and Quantitative Methods - - Econometric and Statistical Methods: Special Topics - - - Duration Analysis; Optimal Timing Strategies
    • I21 - Health, Education, and Welfare - - Education - - - Analysis of Education
    • J24 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Demand and Supply of Labor - - - Human Capital; Skills; Occupational Choice; Labor Productivity
    • J64 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Mobility, Unemployment, Vacancies, and Immigrant Workers - - - Unemployment: Models, Duration, Incidence, and Job Search

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