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Worker Training in a Restructuring Economy: Evidence from the Russian Transition

  • Berger, Mark C.

    (CBER, University of Kentucky)

  • Earle, John S.

    ()

    (George Mason University)

  • Peter, Klara Sabirianova

    ()

    (University of North Carolina, Chapel Hill)

We use 1994-1998 data from the Russian Longitudinal Monitoring Survey (RLMS) to measure the incidence and determinants of several types of worker training and to estimate the effects of training on workers’ interindustry, interfirm, and occupational mobility, their labor force transitions, and their wage growth in Russia compared to the U.S. We hypothesize that the shock of economic liberalization in Russia may raise the benefits of training, particularly retraining for new jobs, but uncertainty concerning the revaluation of skills may raise the costs, with an overall ambiguous effect on the amount of training undertaken. The RLMS indicates a lower rate of formal training than studies have found for the U.S., suggesting that the second effect dominates. Previous schooling is estimated to affect the probability of training positively, but the relationship is much stronger for additional training in the same field than for retraining for new fields, consistent with the hypothesis that schooling and training are complementary but become more substitutable in a restructuring environment. Additional training in workers’ current fields is estimated to reduce mobility and earnings, suggesting inertial programs from the pre-transition era. Retraining in new fields increases all types of worker mobility and has higher returns than those typically observed for training in the U.S., but it also raises the variance of earnings and the probability of unemployment, consistent with a search view of such retraining. Given the large returns to retraining, the efforts of Russian workers to learn new skills may increase as uncertainty is resolved and restructuring proceeds.

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File URL: http://ftp.iza.org/dp361.pdf
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Paper provided by Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA) in its series IZA Discussion Papers with number 361.

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Length: 51 pages
Date of creation: Sep 2001
Date of revision:
Publication status: published in: Research in Labor Economics, 2001, 20, 159-190
Handle: RePEc:iza:izadps:dp361
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  1. Lisa M. Lynch & Sandra E. Black, 1998. "Beyond the Incidence of Employer-Provided Training," ILR Review, Cornell University, ILR School, vol. 52(1), pages 64-81, October.
  2. Tito Boeri & Christopher J. Flinn, . "Returns to Mobility in the Transition to a Market Economy," Working Papers 123, IGIER (Innocenzo Gasparini Institute for Economic Research), Bocconi University.
  3. Michael Lechner, 2000. "An Evaluation of Public-Sector-Sponsored Continuous Vocational Training Programs in East Germany," Journal of Human Resources, University of Wisconsin Press, vol. 35(2), pages 347-375.
  4. Christopher J. O'Leary, . "A Net Impact Analysis of Active Labour Programmes in Hungary," Upjohn Working Papers and Journal Articles cjo1997, W.E. Upjohn Institute for Employment Research.
  5. Ann P. Bartel & Nachum Sicherman, 1995. "Technological Change and the Skill Acquisition of Young Workers," NBER Working Papers 5107, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  6. Mark A. Loewenstein & James R. Spletzer, 1997. "Delayed formal on-the-job training," Industrial and Labor Relations Review, ILR Review, Cornell University, ILR School, vol. 51(1), pages 82-99, October.
  7. Terrell, Katherine & Sorm, Vit, 1999. "Labor Market Policies and Unemployment in the Czech Republic," Journal of Comparative Economics, Elsevier, vol. 27(1), pages 33-60, March.
  8. Kluve, Jochen & Lehmann, Hartmut & Schmidt, Christoph M, 1999. "Active Labour Market Policies in Poland: Human Capital Enhancement, Stigmatization or Benefit Churning?," CEPR Discussion Papers 2059, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
  9. Jonathan R. Veum, 1995. "Sources of Training and Their Impact on Wages," ILR Review, Cornell University, ILR School, vol. 48(4), pages 812-826, July.
  10. Parent, Daniel, 1999. "Wages and Mobility: The Impact of Employer-Provided Training," Journal of Labor Economics, University of Chicago Press, vol. 17(2), pages 298-317, April.
  11. Lynch, Lisa M, 1992. "Private-Sector Training and the Earnings of Young Workers," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 82(1), pages 299-312, March.
  12. John S. Earle & Klara Z. Sabirianova, 2002. "How Late to Pay? Understanding Wage Arrears in Russia," Upjohn Working Papers and Journal Articles 02-77, W.E. Upjohn Institute for Employment Research.
  13. Mark A. Loewenstein & James R. Spletzer, 1997. "Delayed Formal on-the-job Training," ILR Review, Cornell University, ILR School, vol. 51(1), pages 82-99, October.
  14. Martina Lubyova & Jan C. van Ours, 1998. "Effects of Active Labor Market Programs on the Transition Rate from Unemployment into Regular Jobs in the Slovak Republic," William Davidson Institute Working Papers Series 213, William Davidson Institute at the University of Michigan.
  15. Christopher J. O'Leary & Piotr Kolodziejczyk & Gyorgy Lazar, . "The Net Impact of Active Labour Market Programmes in Hungary and Poland," Upjohn Working Papers and Journal Articles cjo19983, W.E. Upjohn Institute for Employment Research.
  16. Ann P. Bartel & Nachum Sicherman, 1999. "Technological Change and Wages: An Interindustry Analysis," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 107(2), pages 285-325, April.
  17. Jonathan R. Veum, 1995. "Sources of training and their impact on wages," Industrial and Labor Relations Review, ILR Review, Cornell University, ILR School, vol. 48(4), pages 812-826, July.
  18. Jonathan R. Veum, 1997. "Training and job mobility among young workers in the United States," Journal of Population Economics, Springer, vol. 10(2), pages 219-233.
  19. Catalin Pauna & John S. Earle, 1998. "Long-term unemployment, social assistance and labor market policies in Romania," Empirical Economics, Springer, vol. 23(1/2), pages 203-235.
  20. John M. Barron & Mark C. Berger & Dan A. Black, 1999. "Do Workers Pay for On-The-Job Training?," Journal of Human Resources, University of Wisconsin Press, vol. 34(2), pages 235-252.
  21. repec:eme:rlepps:v:18:y:1999:i:1999:p:403-438 is not listed on IDEAS
  22. Alan Felstead & Francis Green & Ken Mayhew & Alan Pack, 1999. "The Impact of Training on Labour Mobility," Studies in Economics 9910, School of Economics, University of Kent.
  23. Orazem, Peter F. & Vodopivec, Milan, 1997. "Value of human capital in transition to market: Evidence from Slovenia," European Economic Review, Elsevier, vol. 41(3-5), pages 893-903, April.
  24. John M. Barron & Mark C. Berger & Dan A. Black, 1997. "On-the-Job Training," Books from Upjohn Press, W.E. Upjohn Institute for Employment Research, number ojt, October.
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