Kids or Courses? Gender Differences in the Effects of Active Labour Market Policies

36 Pages Posted: 21 May 2008

See all articles by Michael Lechner

Michael Lechner

University of St. Gallen - Swiss Institute for Empirical Economic Research

Stephan Wiehler

University of St. Gallen - Swiss Institute for International Economics and Applied Economic Research

Date Written: April 2007

Abstract

This paper investigates active labour market programs in Austria with a special emphasis on male-female effect heterogeneity. On average, we find only small effects, if any, for most of the programs. A crucial advantage of the large and informative administrative data we use is that it provides records about pregnancies and times of parental leave, in addition to the information that can typically be found in European administrative data sources used for evaluating active labour market policies. We show that these variables play a key role in removing selection bias and defining outcome variables which may explain why other similar studies found such programs to be more effective for women than for men. In particular for younger women a key effect of the programs is to reduce or postpone pregnancies and to increase the attachment to the labour force. After taking into account gender specific selection effects and the effects of the programs on pregnancies, gender differences (almost) disappear.

Keywords: Active Labour market policy, matching estimation, panel data, program evaluation

JEL Classification: J68

Suggested Citation

Lechner, Michael and Wiehler, Stephan, Kids or Courses? Gender Differences in the Effects of Active Labour Market Policies (April 2007). CEPR Discussion Paper No. DP6267, Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=1135505

Michael Lechner (Contact Author)

University of St. Gallen - Swiss Institute for Empirical Economic Research ( email )

Varnbuelstrasse 14
St. Gallen, 9000
Switzerland
+41 71 224 2320 (Phone)

Stephan Wiehler

University of St. Gallen - Swiss Institute for International Economics and Applied Economic Research ( email )

Dufourstr. 48
St. Gallen, 9000
Switzerland

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