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Nonstandard Forms and Measures of Employment and Unemployment in Transition: A Comparative Study of Estonia, Romania, and Russia

  • Brown, J. David

    ()

    (U.S. Census Bureau)

  • Earle, John S.

    ()

    (George Mason University)

  • Gimpelson, Vladimir

    ()

    (CLMS, Higher School of Economics, Moscow)

  • Kapeliushnikov, Rostislav

    ()

    (CLMS, Higher School of Economics, Moscow)

  • Lehmann, Hartmut

    ()

    (University of Bologna)

  • Telegdy, Álmos

    ()

    (Institute of Economics, Budapest)

  • Vantu, Irina

    ()

    (Central European University, Budapest)

  • Visan, Ruxandra

    ()

    (Central European University, Budapest)

  • Voicu, Alexandru

    ()

    (CUNY - College of Staten Island)

Studies of transition economy labor markets have typically relied on standard, publicly available employment and unemployment statistics. This paper analyzes microdata on detailed labor force survey responses in Russia, Romania, and Estonia to measure nonstandard, boundary forms and alternative definitions of labor force status. Our estimates show that measured employment and unemployment rates are quite sensitive to definition, particularly in the treatment of household production (subsistence agriculture), unpaid family helpers, and discouraged workers; while the categories of part-time work and other forms of marginal attachment are still relatively unimportant. We find that tweaking the official definitions can produce alternative employment rates that are sharply higher in Russia but much lower in Romania and slightly lower in Estonia, and alternative unemployment rates that are sharply higher in Romania and moderately higher in Estonia and Russia.

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File URL: http://ftp.iza.org/dp1961.pdf
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Paper provided by Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA) in its series IZA Discussion Papers with number 1961.

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Length: 36 pages
Date of creation: Feb 2006
Date of revision:
Publication status: published in: Comparative Economic Studies, 2006, 48 (3), 435-457
Handle: RePEc:iza:izadps:dp1961
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  1. Hartmut Lehmann & Jonathan Wadsworth & Alessandro Acquisti, 1998. "Grime and punishment: job insecurity and wage arrears in the Russian Federation," LSE Research Online Documents on Economics 20251, London School of Economics and Political Science, LSE Library.
  2. Tito Boeri & Katherine Terrell, 2001. "Institutional Determinants of Labor Reallocation in Transition," William Davidson Institute Working Papers Series 384, William Davidson Institute at the University of Michigan.
  3. Richard Layard & Ansgar Richter, 1995. "How Much Unemployment is Needed for Restructuring?: The Russian Experience," CEP Discussion Papers dp0238, Centre for Economic Performance, LSE.
  4. John S. Earle & Klara Sabirianova Peter, . "How Late to Pay? Understanding Wage Arrears in Russia," Upjohn Working Papers and Journal Articles jse20023, W.E. Upjohn Institute for Employment Research.
  5. Lori G. Kletzer, 1998. "Job Displacement," Journal of Economic Perspectives, American Economic Association, vol. 12(1), pages 115-136, Winter.
  6. Lehmann, Hartmut & Wadsworth, Jonathan & Acquisti, Alessandro, 1999. "Grime and Punishment: Insecurity and Wage Arrears in the Russian Federation," IZA Discussion Papers 65, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).
  7. John S. Earle, 1997. "Industrial Decline and Labor Reallocation in Romania," William Davidson Institute Working Papers Series 118, William Davidson Institute at the University of Michigan.
  8. Earle, John S. & Sakova, Zuzana, 2000. "Business start-ups or disguised unemployment? Evidence on the character of self-employment from transition economies," Labour Economics, Elsevier, vol. 7(5), pages 575-601, September.
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