Institut für Arbeitsmarkt- und Berufsforschung

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Inhaltsbereich: Institut für Arbeitsmarkt- und Berufsforschung

The statutory mandate

IAB conducts research on the labour market on the basis of two statutory mandates that are specified for the area of unemployment insurance in the Social Code, Book III (SGB III) and for the basic income support scheme for those in need of income support and capable of working (Grundsicherungssystem für erwerbsfähige Hilfebedürftige) in the Social Code, Book II (SGB II). The Social Code does not only contain the regulations on various branches of social insurance but also those parts of social security law which are financed out of tax money as state welfare benefits and which do not have the character of insurance.

Social Code, Book III

The statutory mandate of the Federal Employment Service to conduct labour market and occupational research was initially formulated in the Employment Promotion Act (Arbeitsförderungsgesetz, AFG) of 1969. When the Employment Promotion Act was incorporated into Book III of the Social Code (SGB III) in 1998, the statutory mandate was similarly taken over and defined in more concrete terms, most recently in the amendment of 2002.

The version of Section 280 of the Social Code, Book III (SGB III) now valid stipulates that the Federal Employment Agency (Bundesagentur für Arbeit) is to conduct labour market and occupational research: "The Federal Agency is to monitor, examine and evaluate the status of and developments in employment and the labour market, in general and according to specific occupations, branches of the economy and regions, as well as the effects of active employment promotion; it is to do this firstly by compiling statistics, secondly by conducting labour market and occupational research, and thirdly by producing reports".

This mandate is defined more closely in Section 282 of SGB III. It begins by describing who is to contribute to defining the substance of research (Sub-section 1): "In defining the substance, nature and extent of labour market and occupational research, the Federal Employment Agency must take account of its own need for information, that of the Federal Ministry of the Economy and Labour, as well as that of the Federal Ministry of Health and Social Security in as far as this concerns the occupational inclusion of persons with disabilities or severe disabilities. The Federal Employment Agency is to coordinate the need for research with the Federal Ministry of the Economy and Labour [since 2005: Federal Ministry of Labour and Social Affairs] at least once a year, with the participation of the Federal Ministry of Health and Social Security [since 2005: Federal Ministry of Health]".

Moreover, the IAB is entrusted with the task of conducting research. The substance and key areas of labour market and occupational research are more precisely defined (Sub-section 2): "Examining the effects of employment promotion measures is a main focal point of labour market research. It should be carried out in a timely manner and constitutes an ongoing task of the Institute for Employment Research".

The nature of the assessment of the effects that employment promotion measures have is elaborated in Sub-section 3 of Section 282. Here, in particular, it is a question of the individual measures used to improve the chances of reintegration and the employability of the participants, the efficiency of the measures, and the net effects in economic terms. In addition, the analysis is to be carried out according to different regions (Section 282, Sub-section 4).

The Social Code (SGB) Book Three (III) - Employment promotion

The Social Code, Book II

With the introduction of SGB II, the statutory mandate was extended to include this legal area as well. Section 55 of SGB II reads: "The effects of activation policies and of basic income support are to be analysed regularly and in a timely manner and are to be integrated into labour market and occupational research in accordance with Section 282 of Book III. The Federal Ministry of the Economy and Labour [today: Federal Ministry of Labour and Social Affairs] and the Federal Employment Agency may define the details of the impact research in agreements. Where it is deemed appropriate, impact research may be delegated to third parties".

With this, a link to the previous working area of the IAB has been established. Extensive synergies with the research outlined in SGB III can be achieved, in particular with regard to the impact analysis of labour market policy instruments, research on specific groups of persons – such as the young, the elderly or those in rehabilitation – as well as the analysis of regional and macroeconomic effects. More than this, however, the spectrum of topics to be researched has been clearly extended because impacts of the basic income support scheme (Grundsicherung) that are not directly visible on the labour market are also to be assessed comprehensively. Ultimately it is a question – much more strongly than in the SGB III – of additionally examining the extent to which the social policy goals of the Act have been fulfilled.

Social Code (SGB) Book II – The basic income support scheme for job-seekers (Grundsicherung für Arbeitsuchende)

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