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Unemployment and Transitions in the Turkish Labor Market: Evidence from Individual Level Data


  • Tasci, H. Mehmet

    () (Balikesir University)

  • Tansel, Aysit

    () (Middle East Technical University)


This paper provides a systematic analysis of the determinants of transitions in the Turkish labor market by using the Household Labor Force Survey (HLFS) panel data of 2000 and 2001. We provide two types of evidence. First, we compute annual transition probabilities between the labor market states of employment, unemployment and out-of-the labor force under Markovian assumptions by gender and rural-urban residence and marital status. Transition probabilities are used to analyze the differences in unemployment rates of these groups. Second, we present estimates of gender-specific multinomial logit models to analyze the determinants of men's and women's transition probabilities across labor market states. We find that urban women have higher unemployment rates than urban men because they have lower probability of exiting unemployment for a job and higher probability of exiting employment for unemployment. Non-married men and women's unemployment rates are higher than married men and women's. This may be attributed to the higher probability of non-married men and women's to lose a job. Increases in education level are found to decrease the probability of losing a job. University graduates of two-year and over are more likely to find employment compared to non-graduates. Younger individuals are more likely to lose a job but older individuals are less likely to find a job from unemployment. In provinces with high unemployment the probability of obtaining a job is lower from unemployment. The findings indicate negative duration dependence for women, but not for men. Men improve their chances of obtaining a job if they use newspapers or worker agents.

Suggested Citation

  • Tasci, H. Mehmet & Tansel, Aysit, 2005. "Unemployment and Transitions in the Turkish Labor Market: Evidence from Individual Level Data," IZA Discussion Papers 1663, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).
  • Handle: RePEc:iza:izadps:dp1663

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    References listed on IDEAS

    1. Mark C. Foley, 1997. "Labor Market Dynamics in Russia," Working Papers 780, Economic Growth Center, Yale University.
    2. Louise Grogan, 2000. "Worker Flows in Russia," Tinbergen Institute Discussion Papers 00-008/3, Tinbergen Institute.
    3. Foley, M.C., 1997. "Labor Market Dynamics in Russia," Papers 780, Yale - Economic Growth Center.
    4. Bellmann Lutz & Estrin Saul & Lehmann Hartmut & Wadsworth Jonathan, 1995. "The Eastern German Labor Market in Transition: Gross Flow Estimates from Panel Data," Journal of Comparative Economics, Elsevier, vol. 20(2), pages 139-170, April.
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    Cited by:

    1. Cilasun, Seyit Mumin & Acar, Elif Oznur & Gunalp, Burak, 2015. "The Effects of Labor Market Reforms on the Labor Market Dynamics in Turkey," MPRA Paper 64767, University Library of Munich, Germany.
    2. Ceyhun ELGİN & Tolga Umut KUZUBAŞ, 2012. "Wage-Productivity Gap in Turkish Manufacturing Sector," Iktisat Isletme ve Finans, Bilgesel Yayincilik, vol. 27(316), pages 09-31.
    3. Andrés Fernández Martín & Juan David Herreño, 2013. "Equilibrium Unemployment During Financial Crises," IDB Publications (Working Papers) 4238, Inter-American Development Bank.
    4. Emine Boz & Ceyhun Bora Durdu & Nan Li, 2009. "Labor market search in emerging economies," International Finance Discussion Papers 989, Board of Governors of the Federal Reserve System (U.S.).
    5. Niels-Hugo Blunch & Victor Sulla, 2014. "World gone wrong: the financial crisis, labor market transitions and earnings in Serbia," Economic Change and Restructuring, Springer, vol. 47(3), pages 187-226, August.
    6. Deger Eryar & Hasan Tekguc, 2012. "Gender Effect in Explaining the Mobility Patterns in the Labor Market: A Case Study from Turkey," Working Papers 2012-01, Mardin Artuklu Univeristy, Department of Economics.
    7. Seçil KAYA BAHÇE & Emel MEMİŞ, 2014. "The Uncounted Who Wish to Work – Distinct to the Unemployed or Similar?," Sosyoekonomi Journal, Sosyoekonomi Society, issue 21(21).
    8. Heshmati, Almas, 2007. "Labor Market Policy Options of the Kurdistan Regional Government," IZA Discussion Papers 3247, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).
    9. Blunch, Niels-Hugo & Sulla, Victor, 2011. "The Financial Crisis, Labor Market Transitions and Earnings: A Gendered Panel Data Analysis for Serbia," IZA Discussion Papers 6151, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).
    10. Serdar Selçuk & Orhan Torul, 2016. "A note on the intertemporal labor dynamics in Turkey," Economics Bulletin, AccessEcon, vol. 36(4), pages 2063-2079.
    11. Fares, Jean & Tiongson, Erwin R., 2007. "Youth unemployment, labor market transitions, and scarring : evidence from Bosnia and Herzegovina, 2001-04," Policy Research Working Paper Series 4183, The World Bank.
    12. Eryar, Değer & Tekgüç, Hasan, 2013. "Gender effect in explaining the mobility patterns in the labor market: a Case study from Turkey," MPRA Paper 46006, University Library of Munich, Germany.

    More about this item


    panel data; unemployment; transition probabilities; gender; Turkey;

    JEL classification:

    • J23 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Demand and Supply of Labor - - - Labor Demand
    • J64 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Mobility, Unemployment, Vacancies, and Immigrant Workers - - - Unemployment: Models, Duration, Incidence, and Job Search
    • J16 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Demographic Economics - - - Economics of Gender; Non-labor Discrimination

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