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The Employment Effects of Job Creation Schemes in Germany: A Microeconometric Evaluation

Author

Listed:
  • Caliendo, Marco

    () (University of Potsdam)

  • Hujer, Reinhard

    () (Goethe University Frankfurt)

  • Thomsen, Stephan L.

    () (Leibniz University of Hannover)

Abstract

In this paper we evaluate the employment effects of job creation schemes on the participating individuals in Germany. Job creation schemes are a major element of active labour market policy in Germany and are targeted at long-term unemployed and other hard-to-place individuals. Access to very informative administrative data of the Federal Employment Agency justifies the application of a matching estimator and allows to account for individual (group-specific) and regional effect heterogeneity. We extend previous studies in four directions. First, we are able to evaluate the effects on regular (unsubsidised) employment. Second, we observe the outcome of participants and non-participants for nearly three years after programme start and can therefore analyse mid- and long-term effects. Third, we test the sensitivity of the results with respect to various decisions which have to be made during implementation of the matching estimator, e.g. choosing the matching algorithm or estimating the propensity score. Finally, we check if a possible occurrence of 'unobserved heterogeneity' distorts our interpretation. The overall results are rather discouraging, since the employment effects are negative or insignificant for most of the analysed groups. One notable exception are long-term unemployed individuals who benefit from participation. Hence, one policy implication is to address programmes to this problem group more tightly.

Suggested Citation

  • Caliendo, Marco & Hujer, Reinhard & Thomsen, Stephan L., 2005. "The Employment Effects of Job Creation Schemes in Germany: A Microeconometric Evaluation," IZA Discussion Papers 1512, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).
  • Handle: RePEc:iza:izadps:dp1512
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    References listed on IDEAS

    as
    1. Marco Caliendo & Reinhard Hujer & Stephan Thomsen, 2008. "Identifying effect heterogeneity to improve the efficiency of job creation schemes in Germany," Applied Economics, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 40(9), pages 1101-1122.
    2. A. Smith, Jeffrey & E. Todd, Petra, 2005. "Does matching overcome LaLonde's critique of nonexperimental estimators?," Journal of Econometrics, Elsevier, vol. 125(1-2), pages 305-353.
    3. James J. Heckman & Hidehiko Ichimura & Petra E. Todd, 1997. "Matching As An Econometric Evaluation Estimator: Evidence from Evaluating a Job Training Programme," Review of Economic Studies, Oxford University Press, vol. 64(4), pages 605-654.
    4. Angrist, Joshua D. & Krueger, Alan B., 1999. "Empirical strategies in labor economics," Handbook of Labor Economics,in: O. Ashenfelter & D. Card (ed.), Handbook of Labor Economics, edition 1, volume 3, chapter 23, pages 1277-1366 Elsevier.
    5. repec:spr:portec:v:1:y:2002:i:2:d:10.1007_s10258-002-0010-3 is not listed on IDEAS
    6. Richard Blundell & Monica Costa Dias, 2009. "Alternative Approaches to Evaluation in Empirical Microeconomics," Journal of Human Resources, University of Wisconsin Press, vol. 44(3).
    7. Michael Gerfin & Michael Lechner, 2002. "A Microeconometric Evaluation of the Active Labour Market Policy in Switzerland," Economic Journal, Royal Economic Society, vol. 112(482), pages 854-893, October.
    8. Hujer, Reinhard & Caliendo, Marco & Thomsen, Stephan L., 2004. "New evidence on the effects of job creation schemes in Germany--a matching approach with threefold heterogeneity," Research in Economics, Elsevier, vol. 58(4), pages 257-302, December.
    9. Puhani, Patrick A, 1998. "Advantage Through Training? A Microeconometric Evaluation of the Employment Effects of Active Labour Market Programmes in Poland," CEPR Discussion Papers 2000, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
    10. DiPrete, Thomas A. & Gangl, Markus, 2004. "Assessing bias in the estimation of causal effects: Rosenbaum bounds on matching estimators and instrumental variables estimation with imperfect instruments," Discussion Papers, Research Unit: Labor Market Policy and Employment SP I 2004-101, Social Science Research Center Berlin (WZB).
    11. Jeffrey Smith, 2000. "A Critical Survey of Empirical Methods for Evaluating Active Labor Market Policies," Swiss Journal of Economics and Statistics (SJES), Swiss Society of Economics and Statistics (SSES), vol. 136(III), pages 247-268, September.
    12. Augurzky, Boris & Schmidt, Christoph M., 2001. "The Propensity Score: A Means to An End," IZA Discussion Papers 271, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).
    13. Guido W. Imbens, 2004. "Nonparametric Estimation of Average Treatment Effects Under Exogeneity: A Review," The Review of Economics and Statistics, MIT Press, pages 4-29.
    14. Bryson, Alex & Dorsett, Richard & Purdon, Susan, 2002. "The use of propensity score matching in the evaluation of active labour market policies," LSE Research Online Documents on Economics 4993, London School of Economics and Political Science, LSE Library.
    15. James Heckman & Hidehiko Ichimura & Jeffrey Smith & Petra Todd, 1998. "Characterizing Selection Bias Using Experimental Data," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 66(5), pages 1017-1098, September.
    16. James J. Heckman & Jeffrey A. Smith, 1999. "The Pre-Program Earnings Dip and the Determinants of Participation in a Social Program: Implications for Simple Program Evaluation Strategies," NBER Working Papers 6983, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    17. A. D. Roy, 1951. "Some Thoughts On The Distribution Of Earnings," Oxford Economic Papers, Oxford University Press, vol. 3(2), pages 135-146.
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    More about this item

    Keywords

    job creation schemes; sensitivity analysis; matching; evaluation; long-term unemployed;

    JEL classification:

    • J68 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Mobility, Unemployment, Vacancies, and Immigrant Workers - - - Public Policy
    • H43 - Public Economics - - Publicly Provided Goods - - - Project Evaluation; Social Discount Rate
    • C13 - Mathematical and Quantitative Methods - - Econometric and Statistical Methods and Methodology: General - - - Estimation: General

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