The impact of education on personality
22 December 2014
This paper investigates the short-term effects of a reduction in the length of high school on students’ personality traits using a school reform carried out at the state level in Germany as a quasi-natural experiment. Starting in 2001, academic-track high school (Gymnasium) was reduced from nine to eight years in most of Germany’s federal states, leaving the overall curriculum unchanged. This enabled students to obtain a university entrance qualification (Abitur ) after a total of only 12 rather than 13 years of schooling. We exploit the variation in the length of academic-track high school over time and across states to identify the effect of schooling on students’ Big Five personality traits and on their locus of control.
IAB-Discussion Paper 29/2014
Active labour-market policies in Germany
19 December 2014
Active labour-market policy (ALMP) not only affects the labour-market success of participants. Due to indirect effects, they might also affect the job perspectives of non-participants. Hence, even if ALMP programmes have a positive effect for the participants, this does not mean that ALMP improves the labour-market situation as a whole. Therefore, this paper deals with the question whether ALMP improves the matching-process between job-seekers and vacancies and thus increases the total number of outflows from unemployment into employment at the regional level. To answer this question, we use data for local employment offices of the German Federal Employment Agency for the time period 2006 to 2010 and focus on job-seekers subject to unemployment insurance.
IAB-Discussion Paper 28/2014
New Book: Privacy, Big Data, and the Public Good
19 December 2014
“Privacy, Big Data, and the Public Good: Frameworks for Engagement” is the title of a new book presented in New York in July. The book is edited by Julia Lane, Senior Managing Economist at American Institutes for Research, Victoria Stodden, Assistant Professor of Statistics at Columbia University, Helen Nissenbaum, Professor of Media, Culture and Communication and Computer Science at New York University, and Stefan Bender, Head of the Research Data Centre of the Federal Employment Agency at the IAB. The book provides an accessible summary of the important legal, economic, and statistical thoughts on the many privacy issues associated with the use of big data. It also contains practical suggestions for protecting privacy and confidentiality that can help to guide practitioners.
Further information about the book
Book review (free of charge)
Demography and unemployment in East Germany
01 December 2014
The authors analyze the relation between population aging and the decline of unemployment in East Germany for the years from 1996 to 2012. To this they scrutinize both a direct and an indirect effect of aging on unemployment. The direct effect includes a decomposition of the East German unemployment rate into three components considering changes in the workforce’s age structure, labor market participation, and age-specific unemployment rates. Results show that changes in the age structure of the workforce counteracted unemployment decline since 2005. Spatial panel regressions on the small-scale regional level, however, point towards an indirect effect of aging on unemployment that works through the increasing competition for labor.
IAB-Discussion Paper 26/2014
Differential pricing and private provider performance
27 November 2014
In many countries, employment services are contracted out to private providers. However, there is little evidence on the contract design as well as on the effects of differential pricing on private provider performance. This paper contributes to the literature by presenting detailed information on the contract design and compensation of German private employment service providers in 2009 and 2010.
IAB-Discussion Paper 25/2014
Aspects of wage dynamics in Germany
04 November 2014
Wage inequality in Germany has been rising significantly over the last decades. By now, about one fifth of all employees in Germany are working in the low-wage sector. At the same time, only a fraction of the low-wage workers manage to move up to better-paid jobs. Jens Stephani investigates various research questions concerning the upward wage mobility of low-wage workers which have not been analysed previously: How big are the chances of low-wage workers to stay in higher-paid employment for a longer term after moving up? Which establishments provide above-average wage increases for low-wage workers? How important are personality traits for the chances of low-wage workers moving up? In a separate chapter, Stephani analyses the extent to which the wage levels in establishments that are covered by collective bargaining agreements are still higher than the wage levels in uncovered establishments, despite the decline in unionism in Germany over the last decade.