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An Index of Labour Market Well-being for OECD Countries

Author

Listed:
  • Lars Osberg
  • Andrew Sharpe

    ()

Abstract

This report’s objective is the construction of an index of labour market well-being that is capable of measuring the well-being that individuals in a given society at a given point in time can obtain through the labour market. Besides considering simply the average return from working, workers are also typically concerned with inequality in the distribution of earnings, as well as skills acquisition that affects future returns from working and the uncertainty surrounding these future returns due to, for example, the possibilities of job loss, injury and insufficient income in retirement. The index proposed and constructed here hence attempts to incorporate each of these aspects of labour market well-being. The Centre for the Study of Living Standards has developed an Index of Economic Well-being based on trends in consumption flows, stocks of wealth, inequality, and economic security. This framework is applied here, but the focus is on the well-being of individuals as workers. The proposed Index of Labour Market Well-being (ILMW) therefore covers all persons of working age, both employed and unemployed, and includes 1) the average current return from work; 2) the aggregate accumulation of human capital, which enables future returns from work; 3) inequality in current returns from work; and 4) insecurity in the anticipation of future returns from work. Estimates of the proposed Index are developed for 16 OECD countries for the 1980-2001 period.

Suggested Citation

  • Lars Osberg & Andrew Sharpe, 2003. "An Index of Labour Market Well-being for OECD Countries," CSLS Research Reports 2003-05, Centre for the Study of Living Standards, revised Jan 2004.
  • Handle: RePEc:sls:resrep:0305
    as

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    File URL: http://www.csls.ca/events/aea2004/osberg-sharpe-aea2004.pdf
    File Function: Most recent version, revised for the 2004 American Economic Association meeting.
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    File URL: http://www.csls.ca/reports/labmkt.pdf
    File Function: Original CSLS Research Report version.
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    File URL: http://www.csls.ca/reports/labmktfrench.pdf
    File Function: Rapport numéro 2003-05, version en français.
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    File URL: http://www.csls.ca/reports/labmkttables.pdf
    File Function: Tables, Appendix Tables and Charts
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    References listed on IDEAS

    as
    1. Angel de la Fuente & Rafael Doménech, 2006. "Human Capital in Growth Regressions: How Much Difference Does Data Quality Make?," Journal of the European Economic Association, MIT Press, vol. 4(1), pages 1-36, March.
    2. Lars Osberg, 1998. "Economic Insecurity," Discussion Papers 0088, University of New South Wales, Social Policy Research Centre.
    3. Osberg, L. & Sharpe, A., 1998. "An Index of Economic Well-being for Canada," Department of Economics at Dalhousie University working papers archive 98-08, Dalhousie, Department of Economics.
    4. Lars Osberg & Andrew Sharpe, 2003. "Human Well-being and Economic Well-being: What Values Are Implicit in Current Indices?," CSLS Research Reports 2003-04, Centre for the Study of Living Standards.
    5. Arulampalam, W. & Robin A. Naylor & Jeremy P. Smith, 2002. "University of Warwick," Royal Economic Society Annual Conference 2002 9, Royal Economic Society.
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    Citations

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    Cited by:

    1. Ochsen, Carsten, 2010. "Crime and labor market policy in Europe," International Review of Law and Economics, Elsevier, vol. 30(1), pages 52-61, March.
    2. Andrew Sharpe, 2004. "Literature Review of Frameworks for Macro-indicators," CSLS Research Reports 2004-03, Centre for the Study of Living Standards.
    3. Andrew Sharpe & Jeremy Smith, 2005. "Measuring the Impact of Research on Well-being: A Survey of Indicators of Well-being," CSLS Research Reports 2005-02, Centre for the Study of Living Standards.
    4. James W. Dean & G. Robert Ross, 2006. "Paradoxes and Puzzles in Our Globalized World Public Support of Trade Policy, International Outsourcing Trade Liberalization, Globalization," Carleton Economic Papers 06-07, Carleton University, Department of Economics.
    5. Andrew Sharpe & Anne-Marie Shaker, 2007. "Indicators of Labour Market Conditions in Canada," CSLS Research Reports 2007-03, Centre for the Study of Living Standards.
    6. Ochsen, Carsten, 2005. "Crime and European labour market policy," Thuenen-Series of Applied Economic Theory 55, University of Rostock, Institute of Economics.
    7. Andrew Sharpe & Jill Hardt, 2006. "Five Deaths a Day: Workplace Fatalities in Canada, 1993-2005," CSLS Research Reports 2006-04, Centre for the Study of Living Standards.

    More about this item

    Keywords

    Well-being; Wellbeing; Well Being; Unemployment; Labour Market Outcomes; Labour Market; Labor Market; Wages; Earnings; Labour Compensation; Labor Compensation; Compensation; Human Capital; Long-term Unemployment; Long Term Unemployment; Earnings Inequality; Low Wage Earners; Living Wage; Retirement; Pensions; Defined Benefit; Defined Contribution; Unemployment Insurance; Workplace Injuries; Workplace Fatalities; Injuries; Fatalities; Workplace Safety; Index of Economic Well-being; IEWB; ILMW;

    JEL classification:

    • O57 - Economic Development, Innovation, Technological Change, and Growth - - Economywide Country Studies - - - Comparative Studies of Countries
    • I31 - Health, Education, and Welfare - - Welfare, Well-Being, and Poverty - - - General Welfare, Well-Being
    • E25 - Macroeconomics and Monetary Economics - - Consumption, Saving, Production, Employment, and Investment - - - Aggregate Factor Income Distribution
    • J30 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Wages, Compensation, and Labor Costs - - - General
    • J60 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Mobility, Unemployment, Vacancies, and Immigrant Workers - - - General
    • J81 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Labor Standards - - - Working Conditions
    • J24 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Demand and Supply of Labor - - - Human Capital; Skills; Occupational Choice; Labor Productivity
    • J26 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Demand and Supply of Labor - - - Retirement; Retirement Policies
    • J28 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Demand and Supply of Labor - - - Safety; Job Satisfaction; Related Public Policy
    • H55 - Public Economics - - National Government Expenditures and Related Policies - - - Social Security and Public Pensions

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