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Design Choices in Market Competition for Employment Services for the Long-Term Unemployed


  • Ludo Struyven


Most Western countries have a long tradition of employment service provision by public bodies and non-profit organisations, but not by for-profit organisations. The creation of a quasi-market arrangement is not a simple choice for government. This paper underscores the difficulties and discusses design options. It calls for a complex balancing act between regulation and the creation of room for market competition, between old and new instruments and procedures, and between efficiency and equity. It identifies as two key issues the need to actively create sufficient room for market competition, and the need for "positive creaming" which encourages providers to concentrate their efforts on the most disadvantaged target groups.The paper starts by stating the principles and preconditions for market competition, with a focus on possible quasi-market arrangements for strengthening service provision for the long-term unemployed in Flanders. It sets out four models for contracting with ... La plupart des pays de l'OCDE ont une longue tradition de services de l'emploi fournis par des organismes publics et à but non lucratif, à l'exclusion des organismes à but lucratif. La création d'un quasimarché n'est pas un choix facile pour le gouvernement. Ce document souligne les difficultés et examine les choix possibles dans la conception d'un système quasi-marchand. Il appelle à un jeu d'équilibre entre la régulation et la création de la place pour la concurrence, entre les instruments et les procédures anciens et nouveaux et entre l'efficacité et l'équité. Il identifie comme deux questions clés le besoin de créer activement assez de place pour la concurrence et le besoin d'un "écrémage positif" qui encourage les prestataires à concentrer leurs services sur les groupes les plus difficiles à placer.Le document commence en constatant les principes et les conditions préalables à la concurrence de marché, dans la perspective des éventuels dispositifs quasi-marchands pour ...

Suggested Citation

  • Ludo Struyven, 2004. "Design Choices in Market Competition for Employment Services for the Long-Term Unemployed," OECD Social, Employment and Migration Working Papers 21, OECD Publishing.
  • Handle: RePEc:oec:elsaab:21-en

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    Cited by:

    1. Bernhard, Sarah & Wolff, Joachim, 2008. "Contracting out placement services in Germany : is assignment to private providers effective for needy job-seekers?," IAB Discussion Paper 200805, Institut für Arbeitsmarkt- und Berufsforschung (IAB), Nürnberg [Institute for Employment Research, Nuremberg, Germany].
    2. Kaps, Petra & Schütz, Holger, 2007. "Privatisierung von Arbeitsvermittlungsdienstleistungen - Wundermittel zur Effizienzsteigerung? Eine Bestandsaufnahme deutscher und internationaler Erfahrungen," Discussion Papers, Research Unit: Labor Market Policy and Employment SP I 2007-101, Social Science Research Center Berlin (WZB).

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    JEL classification:

    • H53 - Public Economics - - National Government Expenditures and Related Policies - - - Government Expenditures and Welfare Programs
    • I38 - Health, Education, and Welfare - - Welfare, Well-Being, and Poverty - - - Government Programs; Provision and Effects of Welfare Programs
    • J68 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Mobility, Unemployment, Vacancies, and Immigrant Workers - - - Public Policy

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