Key Lessons for Labour Market Reforms: Evidence from OECD Countries' Experience

Swedish Economic Policy Review, Vol. 5, No. 2, Autumn 1998

Posted: 19 Oct 1999

See all articles by Jörgen Elmeskov

Jörgen Elmeskov

Organization for Economic Co-Operation and Development (OECD) - Policy Studies Branch

John P. Martin

Organization for Economic Co-Operation and Development (OECD) - Directorate for Employment, Labour and Social Affairs (ELS); IZA Institute of Labor Economics; Sciences Po

Stefano Scarpetta

OECD, Directorate for Employment, Labour and Social Affairs; IZA Institute of Labor Economics

Abstract

The purpose of this paper is to distill the lessons for labour market reforms from the ?successes? and ?failures?. It begins by discussing the structural unemployment indicator which the OECD has used to identify the successful countries. This is followed by a review of the cross-country determinants of structural unemployment which focuses on the role of labour market policies and certain institutional factors. One novelty is the specific attention paid to potential interactions between labour market policies and institutional features of the collective bargaining system. The paper also highlights several key lessons for labour market reforms drawing on recent OECD research. In particular, it discusses the role played by labour market insiders in the process of reform. It considers the way in which concerns about the equity effects of labour market reforms have played a role in shaping policies. Finally, it discusses the role of crises as a potential catalyst for needed reforms.

JEL Classification: J21, J38, J58

Suggested Citation

Elmeskov, Jörgen and Martin, John P. and Scarpetta, Stefano, Key Lessons for Labour Market Reforms: Evidence from OECD Countries' Experience. Swedish Economic Policy Review, Vol. 5, No. 2, Autumn 1998. Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=181273

Jörgen Elmeskov

Organization for Economic Co-Operation and Development (OECD) - Policy Studies Branch ( email )

2 rue Andre Pascal
Paris Cedex 16, MO 63108
France

John P. Martin

Organization for Economic Co-Operation and Development (OECD) - Directorate for Employment, Labour and Social Affairs (ELS) ( email )

2 rue Andre Pascal
Paris Cedex 16, 75775
France

IZA Institute of Labor Economics

P.O. Box 7240
Bonn, D-53072
Germany

Sciences Po ( email )

rue saint guillaume
Paris
France

Stefano Scarpetta (Contact Author)

OECD, Directorate for Employment, Labour and Social Affairs ( email )

2 rue Andre Pascal
Paris Cedex 16, 75016
France
+33 1 45 24 19 88 (Phone)
+33 1 45 24 18 59 (Fax)

IZA Institute of Labor Economics

P.O. Box 7240
Bonn, D-53072
Germany

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