Wage Employment


Original abstracts from the papers in the database are provided below. All abstracts are drawn directly from the papers referenced. Links to access the papers are provided, although
the papers may also be available from other web sources. By providing links to other sites, the United Nations Foundation and ExxonMobil Foundation do not guarantee, approve, or endorse the information or products available on these sites.

  • How Can Job Opportunities for Young People in Latin America be Improved?

    Gonzalez-Velosa et al (2012)

    Original abstract:

    Job training programs for vulnerable youth are the main response of Latin American governments to address the problem of inadequate employment opportunities for young people. Despite its importance, knowledge about these programs is scarce. This study contributes to filling this gap in the literature by presenting new evidence on the effectiveness of six of these programs operating or that were implemented in Colombia, Honduras, Mexico, Panama, Peru and Dominican Republic. This analysis uses the results of impact evaluations of these programs and the results of qualitative surveys of young participants and employers, and in-depth interviews to training centers, employers and policy makers. The main results confirm the limited evidence available, namely, that these programs have little impact on the probability of getting a job (although there is a high heterogeneity in these impacts), but a significant impact on job quality. From this analysis, we propose a research agenda to improve knowledge on the functioning and impact of these programs, and provide a series of recommendations to improve the design and increase the effectiveness of youth training programs.

    Intervention settings: Mixed

    Intervention description: Vocational classroom and on-the-job training and job placement.

    Methodology: RCT

    Sample: Youth and adults. Offered to men and women 16-29 years old from lower socioeconomic strata, and those meeting educational and skill requirements of participating firms.

    Findings: 7%-12% increase in employment for women only. Three to seven hours per week increase in weekly hours worked for women only. Especially successful in countries with established private vocational training industry, significant wage employment and high female mobility.

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  • The Impact of Access to Free Childcare on Women's Labor Market Outcomes: Evidence from a Randomized Trial in Low-Income Neighborhoods of Rio de Janeiro

    Barros et al (2011)

    Intervention settings: Urban.

    Intervention description: Publicly provided child care.

    Methodology: Program assignment originally based on a lottery, with lottery winners getting program and losers being put on waiting list.

    Sample: Poor mothers.

    Findings: Increase in use of care (51% to 94%), mothers' employment (36%-46%) - especially among mothers not working six months before lottery (97%).

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  • Evaluating Preschool Programs When Length of Exposure to the Program Varies: A Nonparametric Approach

    Behrman, Cheng, and Todd (2004)

    Original abstract:

    Nonexperimental data are used to evaluate impacts of a Bolivian preschool program on cognitive, psychosocial, and anthropometric outcomes. Impacts are shown to be highly dependent on age and exposure duration. To minimize the effect of distributional assumptions, program impacts are estimated as nonparametric functions of age and duration. A generalized matching estimator is developed and used to control for nonrandom selectivity into the program and into exposure durations. Comparisons with three groups-children in the feeder area not in the program, children in the program for less than or equal to 1 month, and children living in similar areas without the program-indicate that estimates are robust for significant positive effects of the program on cognitive and psychosocial outcomes with greater than or equal to 7 months' exposure, although the age patterns of effects differ slightly by comparison group. Copyright 2004 President and Fellows of Harvard College and the Massachusetts Institute of Technology.

    Intervention settings: Urban.

    Intervention description: Training and unemployment benefits, including a public service component, where local government and other eligible organizations propose public projects and hire ALMP participants to work on them.

    Methodology: Estimation as nonparametric functions of age and duration.

    Sample: Adults. Registered unemployed, having income less than 50% of minimum wage, employed 6 months of last 12 or recent graduate. 45% of sample had university degree.

    Findings: Statistically significant effects on the likelihood of employment, the likelihood of being employed at least once and on wage levels. Middle aged had biggest impacts. Retraining increases the probability of employment and decreases the wage for females. Program not beneficial for highly educated.

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  • Retraining Programs in Russia and Romania: Impact Evaluation Study

    Benus, Brinza, Cuica, Denisova, and Kartseva (2005)

    Original abstract:

    Sustainable economic growth requires an effective re-training system that would facilitate the match of labor supply to the changing due to rapid technological progress labor demand. Moreover, the expected increased openness of the Russian economy due to WTO accession is likely to affect labor demand as well and could have adverse effects on employment. The degree of effectiveness of public re-training programs under operation would largely determine the adjustment costs of trade liberalization as well as the flexibility of the economy with respect to technological changes. A part of re-training system is traditionally associated with state employment offices' programs. Despite the greater than ever interest in Russia and Romania to governmental programs in the context of the on-going public discussion on the role and size of the government, little is known, however, on the impact of state programs in the labor market, and about the effects of public re-training programs in particular.

    Intervention settings:

    Intervention description: Training and unemployment benefits, including a public service component, where local government and other eligible organizations propose public projects and hire ALMP participants to work on them.

    Methodology: Propensity score matching, where non-participants are those who applied for training but were not selected.

    Sample: Adults. Registered unemployed, having income less than 50% of minimum wage, employed 6 months of last 12 or recent graduate. 45% of sample had university degree.

    Findings: Statistically significant effects on the likelihood of employment, the likelihood of being employed at least once, and on wage levels. Middle aged had biggest impacts. Retraining increases the probability of employment and decreases the wage for females. Program not beneficial for highly educated.

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  • The Effect of a Large Expansion of Pre-Primary School Facilities on Preschool Attendance and Maternal Employment

    Berlinski and Galiani (2007)

    Original abstract:

    We provide evidence on the impact of a large construction of pre-primary school facilities in Argentina. We estimate the causal impact of the program on pre-primary school attendance and maternal labor supply. Identification relies on a differences-in-differences strategy where we combine differences across regions in the number of facilities built with differences in exposure across cohorts induced by the timing of the program. We find a sizeable impact of the program on pre-primary school participation among children aged between 3 and 5. In fact, we cannot reject the null hypothesis of a full take-up of newly constructed places. In addition, we find that the childcare subsidy induced by the program increases maternal employment and that this effect is in line with the one previously found for the U.S.

    Intervention settings: Urban.

    Intervention description: Between 1994-2000, created 175,000 new preschools.

    Methodology: Difference-in-differences, exploiting differences across regions and cohorts in program exposure.

    Sample: Middle-income households living in urban areas.

    Findings: Full take-up of new facilities. Increase in employment probability (7-14%).

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