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Why do tougher caseworkers increase employment? The role of programme assignment as a causal mechanism

Listed author(s):
  • Huber, Martin

    ()

  • Mellace, Giovanni

    ()

  • Lechner, Michael

    ()

Previous research found that less accommodating caseworkers are more successful in placing unemployed workers into employment. This paper tries to shed more light on the causal mechanisms behind this result using semiparametric mediation analysis. Analysing very informative linked jobseeker-caseworker data for Switzerland, we find that the positive employment effects of less accommodating caseworkers are not driven by a particularly ef-fective mix of labour market programmes they use, but rather by other dimensions of the counselling process, possibly including threat effects of sanctions, pressure to accept jobs, and other factors related to the caseworker’s counselling style.

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File URL: http://ux-tauri.unisg.ch/RePEc/usg/econwp/EWP-1414.pdf
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Paper provided by University of St. Gallen, School of Economics and Political Science in its series Economics Working Paper Series with number 1414.

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Length: 41 pages
Date of creation: Jun 2014
Handle: RePEc:usg:econwp:2014:14
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  1. Lechner, Michael & Wunsch, Conny, 2013. "Sensitivity of matching-based program evaluations to the availability of control variables," Labour Economics, Elsevier, vol. 21(C), pages 111-121.
  2. Gerfin, Michael & Lechner, Michael & Steiger, Heidi, 2005. "Does subsidised temporary employment get the unemployed back to work? Aneconometric analysis of two different schemes," Labour Economics, Elsevier, vol. 12(6), pages 807-835, December.
  3. Michael Lechner, 2002. "Some practical issues in the evaluation of heterogeneous labour market programmes by matching methods," Journal of the Royal Statistical Society Series A, Royal Statistical Society, vol. 165(1), pages 59-82.
  4. James Heckman & Rodrigo Pinto & Peter Savelyev, 2013. "Understanding the Mechanisms through Which an Influential Early Childhood Program Boosted Adult Outcomes," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 103(6), pages 2052-2086, October.
  5. JAMES G. MacKINNON, 2006. "Bootstrap Methods in Econometrics," The Economic Record, The Economic Society of Australia, vol. 82(s1), pages 2-18, 09.
  6. 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, 08.
  7. Powdthavee, Nattavudh & Lekfuangfu, Warn N. & Wooden, Mark, 2013. "The Marginal Income Effect of Education on Happiness: Estimating the Direct and Indirect Effects of Compulsory Schooling on Well-Being in Australia," IZA Discussion Papers 7365, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).
  8. Stefanie Behncke & Markus Frˆlich & Michael Lechner, 2010. "Unemployed and their caseworkers: should they be friends or foes?," Journal of the Royal Statistical Society Series A, Royal Statistical Society, vol. 173(1), pages 67-92.
  9. Flores, Carlos A. & Flores-Lagunes, Alfonso, 2009. "Identification and Estimation of Causal Mechanisms and Net Effects of a Treatment under Unconfoundedness," IZA Discussion Papers 4237, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).
  10. Imai, Kosuke & Yamamoto, Teppei, 2013. "Identification and Sensitivity Analysis for Multiple Causal Mechanisms: Revisiting Evidence from Framing Experiments," Political Analysis, Cambridge University Press, vol. 21(02), pages 141-171, March.
  11. Guido W. Imbens & Jeffrey M. Wooldridge, 2009. "Recent Developments in the Econometrics of Program Evaluation," Journal of Economic Literature, American Economic Association, vol. 47(1), pages 5-86, March.
  12. Alberto Abadie & Guido W. Imbens, 2008. "On the Failure of the Bootstrap for Matching Estimators," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 76(6), pages 1537-1557, November.
  13. Racine, Jeffrey S. & MacKinnon, James G., 2007. "Inference via kernel smoothing of bootstrap P values," Computational Statistics & Data Analysis, Elsevier, vol. 51(12), pages 5949-5957, August.
  14. Rajeev H. Dehejia & Sadek Wahba, 2002. "Propensity Score-Matching Methods For Nonexperimental Causal Studies," The Review of Economics and Statistics, MIT Press, vol. 84(1), pages 151-161, February.
  15. Huber, Martin & Lechner, Michael & Wunsch, Conny, 2013. "The performance of estimators based on the propensity score," Journal of Econometrics, Elsevier, vol. 175(1), pages 1-21.
  16. 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.
  17. Stijn Vansteelandt & Tyler J. VanderWeele, 2012. "Natural Direct and Indirect Effects on the Exposed: Effect Decomposition under Weaker Assumptions," Biometrics, The International Biometric Society, vol. 68(4), pages 1019-1027, December.
  18. 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.
  19. 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, 01.
  20. Lars Skipper & Marianne Simonsen, 2006. "The costs of motherhood: an analysis using matching estimators," Journal of Applied Econometrics, John Wiley & Sons, Ltd., vol. 21(7), pages 919-934.
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