IDEAS home Printed from
MyIDEAS: Login to save this paper or follow this series

Do public works programs work? Some unpleasant results from the East German experience

  • Kraus, Florian
  • Puhani, Patrick A.
  • Steiner, Viktor

We analyze the effectiveness of public works programs (PWP, Arbeitsbeschaffungsmaßnahmen) in east Germany as measured by their effects on individual future reemployment probabilities in regular jobs. These are estimated by discrete hazard rate models on the basis of individual?level panel data. We account for unobserved individual heterogeneity in both the PWP participation and in the outcome equations. In the latter, we differentiate between transitions into "stable" and "unstable" employment after the PWP. We find that these programs seem to have no special targeting focus on disadvantaged groups in the labor market and that participants are, on average, worse off concerning their re?employment prospects in regular jobs than unemployed people who do not join such a program. A possible explanation for this result is that PWP participants search less intensively for a regular job while on such a program than unemployed non-participants. Thus, our results cast serious doubts on both the effectiveness and the equity aspects of public works programs in east Germany.

If you experience problems downloading a file, check if you have the proper application to view it first. In case of further problems read the IDEAS help page. Note that these files are not on the IDEAS site. Please be patient as the files may be large.

File URL:
Download Restriction: no

Paper provided by ZEW - Zentrum für Europäische Wirtschaftsforschung / Center for European Economic Research in its series ZEW Discussion Papers with number 98-07.

in new window

Date of creation: 1998
Date of revision:
Handle: RePEc:zbw:zewdip:5180
Contact details of provider: Postal: L 7,1; D - 68161 Mannheim
Phone: +49/621/1235-01
Fax: +49/621/1235-224
Web page:

More information through EDIRC

References listed on IDEAS
Please report citation or reference errors to , or , if you are the registered author of the cited work, log in to your RePEc Author Service profile, click on "citations" and make appropriate adjustments.:

as in new window
  1. James J. Heckman, 1989. "Choosing Among Alternative Nonexperimental Methods for Estimating the Impact of Social Programs: The Case of Manpower Training," NBER Working Papers 2861, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  2. Florian Kraus & Patrick Puhani & Viktor Steiner, 1999. "Employment Effects of Publicly Financed Training Programs - The East German Experience," Journal of Economics and Statistics (Jahrbuecher fuer Nationaloekonomie und Statistik), Justus-Liebig University Giessen, Department of Statistics and Economics, vol. 219(1+2), pages 216-248, July.
  3. Gritz, R. Mark, 1993. "The impact of training on the frequency and duration of employment," Journal of Econometrics, Elsevier, vol. 57(1-3), pages 21-51.
  4. repec:bla:restud:v:64:y:1997:i:4:p:605-54 is not listed on IDEAS
  5. Puhani, Patrick A. & Steiner, Viktor, 1996. "Public works for Poland? Active labour market policies during transition," ZEW Discussion Papers 96-01, ZEW - Zentrum für Europäische Wirtschaftsforschung / Center for European Economic Research.
  6. Ridder, G, 1986. "An Event History Approach to the Evaluation of Training, Recruitment and Employment Programmes," Journal of Applied Econometrics, John Wiley & Sons, Ltd., vol. 1(2), pages 109-26, April.
  7. Cramer, J. S. & Ridder, G., 1991. "Pooling states in the multinomial logit model," Journal of Econometrics, Elsevier, vol. 47(2-3), pages 267-272, February.
  8. Steiner, Viktor, 1997. "Extended benefit entitlement periods and the duration of unemployment in West Germany," ZEW Discussion Papers 97-14, ZEW - Zentrum für Europäische Wirtschaftsforschung / Center for European Economic Research.
  9. Zweimuller, Josef & Winter-Ebmer, Rudolf, 1996. "Manpower Training Programmes and Employment Stability," Economica, London School of Economics and Political Science, vol. 63(249), pages 113-30, February.
  10. Ham, John C & LaLonde, Robert J, 1996. "The Effect of Sample Selection and Initial Conditions in Duration Models: Evidence from Experimental Data on Training," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 64(1), pages 175-205, January.
Full references (including those not matched with items on IDEAS)

This item is not listed on Wikipedia, on a reading list or among the top items on IDEAS.

When requesting a correction, please mention this item's handle: RePEc:zbw:zewdip:5180. See general information about how to correct material in RePEc.

For technical questions regarding this item, or to correct its authors, title, abstract, bibliographic or download information, contact: (ZBW - German National Library of Economics)

If you have authored this item and are not yet registered with RePEc, we encourage you to do it here. This allows to link your profile to this item. It also allows you to accept potential citations to this item that we are uncertain about.

If references are entirely missing, you can add them using this form.

If the full references list an item that is present in RePEc, but the system did not link to it, you can help with this form.

If you know of missing items citing this one, you can help us creating those links by adding the relevant references in the same way as above, for each refering item. If you are a registered author of this item, you may also want to check the "citations" tab in your profile, as there may be some citations waiting for confirmation.

Please note that corrections may take a couple of weeks to filter through the various RePEc services.

This information is provided to you by IDEAS at the Research Division of the Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis using RePEc data.