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Transition with Labour Supply

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  • Tito Boeri

Abstract

The literature on the economics of transition has devoted little, if any, attention to labour supply. We show in this paper that, properly accounting for labour supply adjustments permit to understand some of the most puzzling features of transition, such as the output fall, the strikingly low workers' mobility associated with dramatic changes in the structure of employment, the presence of many job leavers as opposed to job losers, the frequency of direct shifts of workers from one job to another without intervening unemployment spells, and the role played by flows to inactivity in the dis-employment process. Our models show that transitional unemployment involves significant locking-in effects at the micro-level, and unemployment persistence at the aggregate level. It also suggests that, rather than starting with generous non-employment benefits and the subsequently cutting them down, as generally prescribed by the Optimal Speed of Transition literature and actually done by most countries of the region, the right sequence should have been the other way round. The paper sheds some light on other design features of unemployment benefits, suitable for economies undergoing rapid structural change.

Suggested Citation

  • Tito Boeri, 1999. "Transition with Labour Supply," William Davidson Institute Working Papers Series 274, William Davidson Institute at the University of Michigan.
  • Handle: RePEc:wdi:papers:1999-274
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    References listed on IDEAS

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    Cited by:

    1. Balla, Katalin & Köllo, János & Simonovits, András, 2008. "Transition with heterogeneous labor," Structural Change and Economic Dynamics, Elsevier, vol. 19(3), pages 203-220, September.
    2. Fiona Duffy & Patrick Paul Walsh, 2000. "Individual Pay and Outside Options: Evidence from the Polish Labour Force Survey," William Davidson Institute Working Papers Series 364, William Davidson Institute at the University of Michigan.
    3. Köllő, János & Simonovits, András & Balla, Katalin, 2006. "Transzformációs sokk heterogén munkaerőpiacon
      [Transformation shock on a heterogeneous labour market]
      ," Közgazdasági Szemle (Economic Review - monthly of the Hungarian Academy of Sciences), Közgazdasági Szemle Alapítvány (Economic Review Foundation), vol. 0(6), pages 485-508.
    4. Jurajda, Stepán & Terrell, Katherine, 2008. "Job Reallocation in Two Cases of Massive Adjustment in Eastern Europe," World Development, Elsevier, vol. 36(11), pages 2144-2169, November.
    5. Kupets, Olga, 2006. "Determinants of unemployment duration in Ukraine," Journal of Comparative Economics, Elsevier, vol. 34(2), pages 228-247, June.
    6. Mihails Hazans, 2007. "Looking for the workforce: the elderly, discouraged workers, minorities, and students in the Baltic labour markets," Empirica, Springer;Austrian Institute for Economic Research;Austrian Economic Association, vol. 34(4), pages 319-349, September.
    7. Foster, Neil & Stehrer, Robert, 2007. "Modeling transformation in CEECs using smooth transitions," Journal of Comparative Economics, Elsevier, vol. 35(1), pages 57-86, March.
    8. John Giles & Albert Park & Fang Cai, 2003. "How has Economic Restructuring Affected China???s Urban Workers?," William Davidson Institute Working Papers Series 2003-628, William Davidson Institute at the University of Michigan.
    9. Bonin, Holger & Euwals, Rob, 2001. "Participation Behavior of East German Women after German Unification," IZA Discussion Papers 413, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).
    10. Jekaterina Dmitrijeva & Mihails Hazans, 2007. "A Stock-Flow Matching Approach to Evaluation of Public Training Programme in a High Unemployment Environment," LABOUR, CEIS, vol. 21(3), pages 503-540, September.
    11. Lizal, Lubomir & Kocenda, Evzen, 2001. "State of corruption in transition: case of the Czech Republic," Emerging Markets Review, Elsevier, vol. 2(2), pages 138-160, June.
    12. Maxim Bouev, 2004. "Diverging Paths: Transition in the Presence of the Informal Sector," William Davidson Institute Working Papers Series 2004-689, William Davidson Institute at the University of Michigan.
    13. Stepan Jurajda & Katherine Terrell, 2000. "Optimal Speed of Transition: Micro Evidence from the Czech Republic," William Davidson Institute Working Papers Series 355, William Davidson Institute at the University of Michigan.
    14. Alan A. Bevan & Saul Estrin, 2000. "The Determinants of Foreign Direct Investment in Transition Economies," William Davidson Institute Working Papers Series 342, William Davidson Institute at the University of Michigan.
    15. Janos Kollo, 2001. "The patterns of non-employment in Hungary's least developed regions," Budapest Working Papers on the Labour Market 0101, Institute of Economics, Centre for Economic and Regional Studies, Hungarian Academy of Sciences.
    16. Stepan Jurajda & Katherine Terrell, 2001. "What Drives the Speed of Job Reallocation during Episodes of Massive Adjustment?," CERGE-EI Working Papers wp170, The Center for Economic Research and Graduate Education - Economics Institute, Prague.
    17. Ekaterina Kalugina & Boris Najman, 2003. "Travail et pauvreté en Russie : évaluations objectives et perceptions subjectives," Économie et Statistique, Programme National Persée, vol. 367(1), pages 83-100.
    18. Boriss Siliverstovs & Dmitri Koulikov, 2003. "Labor Supply of Married Females in Estonia," Discussion Papers of DIW Berlin 321, DIW Berlin, German Institute for Economic Research.
    19. Vlad Ivanenko, 2001. "Effective Tax Rates in Transition," William Davidson Institute Working Papers Series 378, William Davidson Institute at the University of Michigan.
    20. Schäfer, Holger, 2004. "Arbeitsmärkte in Mittel- und Osteuropa," IW-Trends – Vierteljahresschrift zur empirischen Wirtschaftsforschung, Institut der deutschen Wirtschaft Köln (IW) / Cologne Institute for Economic Research, vol. 31(1), pages 39-44.
    21. Volkhart Vincentz & Michael Knogler, 2003. "Szenarien der mittelfristigen Konvergenz der EU-Beitrittsländer Polen, Slowakische Republik und Ungarn," Working Papers 244, Leibniz Institut für Ost- und Südosteuropaforschung (Institute for East and Southeast European Studies).
    22. Frederic Chabellard, 2001. "Dollarization of Liabilities in Non-tradable Goods Sector," William Davidson Institute Working Papers Series 380, William Davidson Institute at the University of Michigan.
    23. Jekaterina Dmitrijeva, 2008. "Matching and Labour Market Efficiency across Space and through EU accession: Evidence from Latvia, Estonia and Slovenia," Documents de recherche 08-05, Centre d'Études des Politiques Économiques (EPEE), Université d'Evry Val d'Essonne.
    24. Michael Knogler, 2002. "Arbeitsmarktpolitische Herausforderungen in den Ländern der EU-Beitrittskandidaten," Working Papers 235, Leibniz Institut für Ost- und Südosteuropaforschung (Institute for East and Southeast European Studies).

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    JEL classification:

    • J21 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Demand and Supply of Labor - - - Labor Force and Employment, Size, and Structure
    • J6 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Mobility, Unemployment, Vacancies, and Immigrant Workers
    • P2 - Economic Systems - - Socialist Systems and Transition Economies

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