Changes in the governance of employment services in Germany since 2003
"Institutional changes in the governance of employment services were the starting point of comprehensive labour market and social policy reforms - the so-called Hartz-reforms (2003-2005) - in Germany. Particularly with the Hartz IV reform in 2005 Germany's status- and occupation-oriented social protection regime has been relinquished for a larger share of dependent population. At the interface of labour market and social policy high shares of meanstested income support recipients are going to be activated now. In line with similar developments in other countries the challenge for Germany's public employment and social services is the jointly managing of activation measures and income support policies in order to increase employment and to avoid exclusion. To deal with this challenge several European countries have set up 'single gateways' and 'one-stop shops' by merging the administration of different income support schemes (unemployment, work disability, social assistance) with employment and welfare services. The changes in the realm of employment services in Germany, however, follow a different path. Instead of implementing a single gateway for all unemployed and inactive working age people a two-tier or even three-tier system was created: Public Employment Service (PES) offices for short-term unemployed and joint agencies combining former local PES and municipal social assistance (ARGEn) for recipients of the basic income support. This new structure of administrative bodies, a result of protracted federal negotiations, created governance problems and hampers an effective activation strategy for potential long-term unemployed. The paper aims at a preliminary assessment of the effects of changing governance in employment services and sets out probable paths of future adaptation to arrive at more coherent activation strategies for all employable persons on income support." (Author's abstract, IAB-Doku) ((en))
|Date of creation:||25 Feb 2008|
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