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Public Employment Services and Employers: How Important are Networks with Firms?


  • Stefanie Behncke


  • Markus Frölich


  • Michael Lechner



This paper examines whether contacts between caseworkers in public employment offices and employers impact on the reemployment chances of the unemployed they counsel. This analysis is made possible through a large administrative dataset on unemployed combined with an extensive survey of caseworkers' characteristics and their strategies. This data was created for evaluating public employment services in Switzerland. We use econometric techniques from the treatment evaluation literature to identify causal effects of a more intense employer focus of the caseworkers. The estimation results indicate that caseworkers who maintain direct contacts to firms achieve higher reintegration rates.

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  • Stefanie Behncke & Markus Frölich & Michael Lechner, 2007. "Public Employment Services and Employers: How Important are Networks with Firms?," University of St. Gallen Department of Economics working paper series 2007 2007-33, Department of Economics, University of St. Gallen.
  • Handle: RePEc:usg:dp2007:2007-33

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    References listed on IDEAS

    1. Lechner, Michael, 1999. "Identification and Estimation of Causal Effects of Multiple Treatments Under the Conditional Independence Assumption," IZA Discussion Papers 91, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).
    2. Dorsett, Richard, 2006. "The new deal for young people: effect on the labour market status of young men," Labour Economics, Elsevier, vol. 13(3), pages 405-422, June.
    3. Michael Lechner & Stephan Wiehler, 2011. "Kids or courses? Gender differences in the effects of active labor market policies," Journal of Population Economics, Springer;European Society for Population Economics, vol. 24(3), pages 783-812, July.
    4. Berman, Eli, 1997. "Help Wanted, Job Needed: Estimates of a Matching Function from Employment Service Data," Journal of Labor Economics, University of Chicago Press, vol. 15(1), pages 251-292, January.
    5. Michael Lechner & Ruth Miquel & Conny Wunsch, 2011. "Long‐Run Effects Of Public Sector Sponsored Training In West Germany," Journal of the European Economic Association, European Economic Association, vol. 9(4), pages 742-784, August.
    6. Conny Wunsch & Michael Lechner, 2008. "What Did All the Money Do? On the General Ineffectiveness of Recent West German Labour Market Programmes," Kyklos, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 61(1), pages 134-174, February.
    7. George Sheldon, 2003. "The Efficiency of Public Employment Services: A Nonparametric Matching Function Analysis for Switzerland," Journal of Productivity Analysis, Springer, vol. 20(1), pages 49-70, July.
    8. Vassiliev, Anatoli & Ferro Luzzi, Giovanni & Fluckiger, Yves & Ramirez, Jose V., 2006. "Unemployment and employment offices' efficiency: What can be done?," Socio-Economic Planning Sciences, Elsevier, vol. 40(3), pages 169-186, September.
    9. Thomas Brodaty & Bruno Crépon & Denis Fougère, 2000. "Using Matching Estimators to Evaluate Alternative Youth Employment Programs : Evidence from France, 1986-1988," Working Papers 2000-25, Center for Research in Economics and Statistics.
    10. James J. Heckman & Jeffrey A. Smith, 1999. "The Pre-Program Earnings Dip and the Determinants of Participation in a Social Program: Implications for Simple Program Evaluation Strategies," NBER Working Papers 6983, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    11. 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.
    12. Guido W. Imbens, 2004. "Nonparametric Estimation of Average Treatment Effects Under Exogeneity: A Review," The Review of Economics and Statistics, MIT Press, vol. 86(1), pages 4-29, February.
    13. Joffe, Marshall M. & Ten Have, Thomas R. & Feldman, Harold I. & Kimmel, Stephen E., 2004. "Model Selection, Confounder Control, and Marginal Structural Models: Review and New Applications," The American Statistician, American Statistical Association, vol. 58, pages 272-279, November.
    14. Alberto Abadie & Guido W. Imbens, 2006. "Large Sample Properties of Matching Estimators for Average Treatment Effects," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 74(1), pages 235-267, January.
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    Cited by:

    1. Pierre Koning, 2009. "The effectiveness of Public Employment Service workers in the Netherlands," Empirical Economics, Springer, vol. 37(2), pages 393-409, October.
    2. Jonas Maibom & Michael Rosholm & Michael Svarer, 2017. "Experimental Evidence on the Effects of Early Meetings and Activation," Scandinavian Journal of Economics, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 119(3), pages 541-570, July.

    More about this item


    Public employment services; new public management; employer focus;

    JEL classification:

    • J68 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Mobility, Unemployment, Vacancies, and Immigrant Workers - - - Public Policy

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