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Cream-Skimmer or Underdog? Labor Type Selectivity, Pre-Program Wage, and Rural Labor Training Program Outcome

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  • Chen, Yiu Por (Vincent)

    () (University of California, San Diego)

Abstract

The mismatch between laborer's abilities and the target subject of the training program is one of the most primary concerns for a labor training program. The ability of different workers may significantly affect the outcomes of a labor training program. The objective of this paper is to look at the incentive of labor to enter the program using data of a pilot study at Zhejiang province in China. This paper shows that the average distance of a training center in a village, and the active labor proportion in a family are the core instruments that influence participation of laborers in the rural labor training program. It suggests that rural laborers enter the training program due to the availability of abundant labor in a family, and the convenient conveyance cost to the training center. The "Ashenfelter's dip," a pre-program wage drop, on the other hand may induce workers of higher caliber to enter the training program and cause the "cream-skimming" effect to training program. The traditional view of "opportunity cost" to enter a training program is extended by the result of cream skimming and training and can be used in revising the future design of rural labor training program. Putting the cream-skimming effect and the training issues together, a better accountability and governance of the training program which actively takes into account of rural laborer needs may be called for.

Suggested Citation

  • Chen, Yiu Por (Vincent), 2009. "Cream-Skimmer or Underdog? Labor Type Selectivity, Pre-Program Wage, and Rural Labor Training Program Outcome," IZA Discussion Papers 3979, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).
  • Handle: RePEc:iza:izadps:dp3979
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    References listed on IDEAS

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    1. David H. Autor & Susan N. Houseman, 2010. "Do Temporary-Help Jobs Improve Labor Market Outcomes for Low-Skilled Workers? Evidence from "Work First"," American Economic Journal: Applied Economics, American Economic Association, vol. 2(3), pages 96-128, July.
    2. Ashenfelter, Orley C, 1978. "Estimating the Effect of Training Programs on Earnings," The Review of Economics and Statistics, MIT Press, vol. 60(1), pages 47-57, February.
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    4. Ashenfelter, Orley & Card, David, 1985. "Using the Longitudinal Structure of Earnings to Estimate the Effect of Training Programs," The Review of Economics and Statistics, MIT Press, vol. 67(4), pages 648-660, November.
    5. Angrist, Joshua D & Evans, William N, 1998. "Children and Their Parents' Labor Supply: Evidence from Exogenous Variation in Family Size," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 88(3), pages 450-477, June.
    6. Daniel Friedlander & David H. Greenberg & Philip K. Robins, 1997. "Evaluating Government Training Programs for the Economically Disadvantaged," Journal of Economic Literature, American Economic Association, vol. 35(4), pages 1809-1855, December.
    7. David H. Autor, 2001. "Wiring the Labor Market," Journal of Economic Perspectives, American Economic Association, vol. 15(1), pages 25-40, Winter.
    8. Lundin, Martin & Skedinger, Per, 2006. "Decentralisation of active labour market policy: The case of Swedish local employment service committees," Journal of Public Economics, Elsevier, vol. 90(4-5), pages 775-798, May.
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    10. Heckman, James J & Smith, Jeffrey A, 1999. "The Pre-programme Earnings Dip and the Determinants of Participation in a Social Programme. Implications for Simple Programme Evaluation Strategies," Economic Journal, Royal Economic Society, vol. 109(457), pages 313-348, July.
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    More about this item

    Keywords

    labor market policy; labor migration; rural labor training; poverty alleviation; sunshine program;

    JEL classification:

    • P36 - Economic Systems - - Socialist Institutions and Their Transitions - - - Consumer Economics; Health; Education and Training; Welfare, Income, Wealth, and Poverty
    • O15 - Economic Development, Innovation, Technological Change, and Growth - - Economic Development - - - Economic Development: Human Resources; Human Development; Income Distribution; Migration
    • J08 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - General - - - Labor Economics Policies
    • J43 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Particular Labor Markets - - - Agricultural Labor Markets
    • J48 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Particular Labor Markets - - - Particular Labor Markets; Public Policy
    • I38 - Health, Education, and Welfare - - Welfare, Well-Being, and Poverty - - - Government Programs; Provision and Effects of Welfare Programs

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