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Experiments on Unemployment Benefit Sanctions and Job Search Behavior

  • Boone, Jan


    (Tilburg University)

  • Sadrieh, Abdolkarim


    (Tilburg University)

  • van Ours, Jan C.


    (Tilburg University)

This paper presents the results of an experimental study on unemployment benefit sanctions. The experimental set-up allows us to distinguish between the effect of benefit sanctions once they are imposed (the ex post effect) and the effect that unemployed want to avoid getting a benefit sanction imposed (the ex ante effect). We find that both effects matter. Moreover, the ex ante effect turns out to be substantial and bigger than the ex post effect. Benefit sanctions stimulate the outflow from unemployment.

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Paper provided by Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA) in its series IZA Discussion Papers with number 1000.

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Length: 31 pages
Date of creation: Jan 2004
Date of revision:
Publication status: published in: European Economic Review, 2009, 53 (8), 937-951
Handle: RePEc:iza:izadps:dp1000
Contact details of provider: Postal: IZA, P.O. Box 7240, D-53072 Bonn, Germany
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  1. Sonnemans, Joep, 1998. "Strategies of search," Journal of Economic Behavior & Organization, Elsevier, vol. 35(3), pages 309-332, April.
  2. Boone, Jan & Fredriksson, Peter & Holmlund, Bertil & van Ours, Jan C., 2001. "Optimal Unemployment Insurance with Monitoring and Sanctions," IZA Discussion Papers 401, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).
  3. Jaap H. Abbring & Gerard J. Berg & Jan C. Ours, 2005. "The Effect of Unemployment Insurance Sanctions on the Transition Rate from Unemployment to Employment," Economic Journal, Royal Economic Society, vol. 115(505), pages 602-630, 07.
  4. Cox, James C & Oaxaca, Ronald L, 1992. "Direct Tests of the Reservation Wage Property," Economic Journal, Royal Economic Society, vol. 102(415), pages 1423-32, November.
  5. Lalive, R. & van Ours, J.C. & Zweimüller, J., 2002. "The Effect of Benefit Sanctions on the Duration of Unemployment," Discussion Paper 2002-19, Tilburg University, Center for Economic Research.
  6. Dan A. Black & Jeffrey A. Smith & Mark C. Berger & Brett J. Noel, 2003. "Is the Threat of Reemployment Services More Effective Than the Services Themselves? Evidence from Random Assignment in the UI System," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 93(4), pages 1313-1327, September.
  7. Selten, R. & Abbink, K. & Buchta, J. & Sadrieh, A., 2002. "How to Play 3x3 Games : A Strategy Method Experiment," Discussion Paper 2002-39, Tilburg University, Center for Economic Research.
  8. Kahneman, Daniel & Tversky, Amos, 1979. "Prospect Theory: An Analysis of Decision under Risk," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 47(2), pages 263-91, March.
  9. Martin, John P. & Grubb, David, 2001. "What works and for whom: a review of OECD countries' experiences with active labour market policies," Working Paper Series 2001:14, IFAU - Institute for Evaluation of Labour Market and Education Policy.
  10. Peter Fredriksson & Bertil Holmlund, 2003. "Improving Incentives in Unemployment Insurance: A Review of Recent Research," CESifo Working Paper Series 922, CESifo Group Munich.
  11. Braunstein, Yale M & Schotter, Andrew, 1982. "Labor Market Search: An Experimental Study," Economic Inquiry, Western Economic Association International, vol. 20(1), pages 133-44, January.
  12. Michael Rosholm & Michael Svarer, 2008. "The Threat Effect of Active Labour Market Programmes," Scandinavian Journal of Economics, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 110(2), pages 385-401, 06.
  13. repec:cup:cbooks:9780521456821 is not listed on IDEAS
  14. Schotter, Andrew & Braunstein, Yale M, 1981. "Economic Search: An Experimental Study," Economic Inquiry, Western Economic Association International, vol. 19(1), pages 1-25, January.
  15. Hey, John D., 1987. "Still searching," Journal of Economic Behavior & Organization, Elsevier, vol. 8(1), pages 137-144, March.
  16. Dale T. Mortensen, 1977. "Unemployment insurance and job search decisions," Industrial and Labor Relations Review, ILR Review, Cornell University, ILR School, vol. 30(4), pages 505-517, July.
  17. Cox, James C & Oaxaca, Ronald L, 1989. " Laboratory Experiments with a Finite-Horizon Job-Search Model," Journal of Risk and Uncertainty, Springer, vol. 2(3), pages 301-29, September.
  18. Reinhard Selten & Michael Mitzkewitz & Gerald R. Uhlich, 1997. "Duopoly Strategies Programmed by Experienced Players," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 65(3), pages 517-556, May.
  19. Bruce D. Meyer, 1995. "Lessons from the U.S. Unemployment Insurance Experiments," Journal of Economic Literature, American Economic Association, vol. 33(1), pages 91-131, March.
  20. Abbink, Klaus & Abdolkarim Sadrieh, 1995. "RatImage - research Assistance Toolbox for Computer-Aided Human Behavior Experiments," Discussion Paper Serie B 325, University of Bonn, Germany.
  21. Berg, Gerard J. van den & Klaauw, Bas van der & Ours, Jan C. van, 1998. "Punitive sanctions and the transition rate from welfare to work," Serie Research Memoranda 0033, VU University Amsterdam, Faculty of Economics, Business Administration and Econometrics.
  22. Lippman, Steven A & McCall, John J, 1976. "The Economics of Job Search: A Survey: Part I," Economic Inquiry, Western Economic Association International, vol. 14(2), pages 155-89, June.
  23. Hey, John D., 1982. "Search for rules for search," Journal of Economic Behavior & Organization, Elsevier, vol. 3(1), pages 65-81, March.
  24. Tversky, Amos & Kahneman, Daniel, 1992. " Advances in Prospect Theory: Cumulative Representation of Uncertainty," Journal of Risk and Uncertainty, Springer, vol. 5(4), pages 297-323, October.
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