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Testing the importance of search frictions, matching, and reservation prestige through randomized experiments in Jordan

Author

Listed:
  • Groh, Matthew
  • McKenzie, David
  • Shammout, Nour
  • Vishwanath, Tara

Abstract

Unemployment rates for tertiary-educated youth in Jordan are high, as is the duration of unemployment. Two randomized experiments in Jordan were used to test different theories that may explain this phenomenon. The first experiment tested the role of search and matching frictions by providing firms and job candidates with an intensive screening and matching service based on educational backgrounds and psychometric assessments. Although more than 1,000 matches were made, youth rejected the opportunity to even have an interview in 28 percent of cases, and when a job offer was received, they rejected this offer or quickly quit the job 83 percent of the time. A second experiment built on the first by examining the willingness of educated, unemployed youth to apply for jobs of varying levels of prestige. Youth applied to only a small proportion of the job openings they were told about, with application rates higher for higher prestige jobs than lower prestige jobs. Youth failed to show up for the majority of interviews scheduled for low prestige jobs. The results suggest that reservation prestige is an important factor underlying the unemployment of educated Jordanian youth.

Suggested Citation

  • Groh, Matthew & McKenzie, David & Shammout, Nour & Vishwanath, Tara, 2014. "Testing the importance of search frictions, matching, and reservation prestige through randomized experiments in Jordan," Policy Research Working Paper Series 7030, The World Bank.
  • Handle: RePEc:wbk:wbrwps:7030
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    Cited by:

    1. Blattman, Christopher & Dercon, Stefan, 2016. "Occupational choice in early industrializing societies: Experimental evidence on the income and health effects of industrial and entrepreneurial work," CEPR Discussion Papers 11556, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
    2. repec:eee:ecoedu:v:62:y:2018:i:c:p:183-191 is not listed on IDEAS

    More about this item

    Keywords

    Labor Markets; Tertiary Education; Disability; Labor Policies; Labor Management and Relations;

    JEL classification:

    • O12 - Economic Development, Innovation, Technological Change, and Growth - - Economic Development - - - Microeconomic Analyses of Economic Development
    • O15 - Economic Development, Innovation, Technological Change, and Growth - - Economic Development - - - Economic Development: Human Resources; Human Development; Income Distribution; Migration
    • J64 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Mobility, Unemployment, Vacancies, and Immigrant Workers - - - Unemployment: Models, Duration, Incidence, and Job Search
    • J08 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - General - - - Labor Economics Policies

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