OECD Social, Employment and Migration Working Papers

Same Same but Different: School-to-work Transitions in Emerging and Advanced Economies
ISSN :
1815-199X (online)
DOI :
10.1787/1815199x
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This series is designed to make available to a wider readership selected labour market, social policy and migration studies prepared for use within the OECD. Authorship is usually collective, but principal writers are named. The papers are generally available only in their original language - English or French - with a summary in the other.
 
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Mark Number Date TitleClick to Access
  N° 53   07 June 2007 Click to Access:  Pension Reform in China
Felix Salditt, Peter Whiteford, Willem Adema
China is currently in the process of developing the largest pension system in the world, and it is doing this at a time of unparalleled economic and demographic transition. The central government has followed a step-by-step approach to develop a system that can accommodate a rapidly aging...
  N° 52   29 Mar 2007 Click to Access:  Intergenerational Transmission of Disadvantage
Anna Christina D'Addio
This report surveys the research in OECD countries on intergenerational mobility – i.e. the extent to which key characteristics and life experiences of individuals differ from those of their parents. A number of findings emerge: Intergenerational earnings mobility varies significantly across...
  N° 51   05 Mar 2007 Click to Access:  What Works Best in Reducing Child Poverty
Peter Whiteford, Willem Adema
Child poverty is firmly on the policy agenda in many OECD countries. One of the main issues in the debate is the appropriate balance between the so-called "benefits strategy" (increasing the adequacy of benefits for low-income families with children) and the so-called "work strategy" (promoting...
  N° 50   05 Mar 2007 Click to Access:  The Labour Market Integration of Immigrants in Denmark
Thomas Liebig
The labour market integration of immigrants has been a key issue both in the public debate and on the government agenda in Denmark, triggered by unfavourable employment outcomes of immigrants – the gaps in employment rates of immigrants compared to the native-born are among the highest in...
  N° 49   22 Feb 2007 Click to Access:  The Labour Market Integration of Immigrants in Australia
Thomas Liebig
The labour market integration of immigrants in Australia is shaped by the country’s long tradition as an immigration country and its selection policy. Over the post-war period, the main origin countries of immigration to Australia have shifted from English-speaking countries to other OECD...
  N° 48   21 Feb 2007 Click to Access:  The Integration of Immigrants into the Labour Market
Georges Lemaître
The current situation regarding the integration of immigrants in the labour market in Sweden is the consequence of a number of factors and developments. The past fifteen years have seen a higher share of humanitarian migration in Sweden than in the past. This is a form of migration for which...
  N° 47   01 Feb 2007 Click to Access:  The Labour Market Integration of Immigrants in Germany
Thomas Liebig
The current situation of the labour market integration of migrants in Germany has to be viewed in the light of its immigration history. During the post-war economic boom, until 1973, Germany focused on the recruitment of low-skilled foreign labour. Many of these "guestworker" immigrants settled...
  N° 46   31 Jan 2007 Click to Access:  Minimum Wages, Minimum Labour Costs and the Tax Treatment of Low-Wage Employment
Herwig Immervoll
International comparisons of minimum-wage levels have largely focused on the gross value of minimum wages, ignoring the effects of taxation on both labour costs and the net income of employees. This paper presents estimates of the tax burdens facing minimum-wage workers. These are used as a...
  N° 45   21 Dec 2006 Click to Access:  Publicly-provided Services and the Distribution of Resources
François Marical, Marco Mira d'Ercole, Maria Vaalavuo, Gerlinde Verbist
This report looks at the effects on the distribution of household income of those government-provided services that confer a personal benefit to users. While most of the comparative evidence of the size and evolution of income inequalities in OECD countries relies on the concept of household...
  N° 42   08 Dec 2006 Click to Access:  Activation Strategies and the Performance of Employment Services in Germany, the Netherlands and the United Kingdom
Peter Tergeist, David Grubb
Strategies to 'activate' the unemployed with the help of high-quality employment services have continuously gained importance in the policy debate. The purpose of this report is to examine how activation strategies and the performance of employment services are addressed in three countries...
  N° 44   08 Dec 2006 Click to Access:  The Turkish Pension System
Anne-Marie Brook, Edward R. Whitehouse
Recent social security reform has significantly improved the long-run sustainability of the pension system. However, the pension system continues to serve as an important barrier to a more rapid expansion of the formal-sector economy in two ways. First, early-retirement incentives (including...
  N° 43   08 Dec 2006 Click to Access:  The Role of Derived Rights for Old-age Income Security of Women
Jongkyun Choi
1. This paper analyses the income situation of older women living alone and examines the role of pension entitlements from derived rights for their income security. The data shows that the share of elderly women living alone is expected to increase substantially due to population ageing and...
  N° 41   05 Dec 2006 Click to Access:  Is Training More Frequent When the Wage Premium is Smaller?
Andrea Bassanini, Giorgio Brunello
According to Becker [1964], when labour markets are perfectly competitive, general training is paid by the worker, who reaps all the benefits from the investment. Therefore, ceteris paribus, the greater the training wage premium, the greater the investment in general training. Using data from...
  N° 40   04 Dec 2006 Click to Access:  Neutral or Fair?
Monika Queisser, Edward R. Whitehouse
1. Economists and policymakers increasingly use the word "actuarial" in the analysis of pension systems and retirement incentives. But the debate is often confused. "Actuarial fairness" and "actuarial neutrality" are promoted loosely as desirable goals of pension reform. This paper...
  N° 39   01 Dec 2006 Click to Access:  Starting Well or Losing their Way?
Glenda Quintini, Sébastien Martin
Despite the fact that today’s young cohorts are smaller in number and better educated than their older counterparts, high youth unemployment remains a serious problem in many OECD countries. This reflects a variety of factors, including the relatively high proportion of young people leaving...
  N° 38   01 Aug 2006 Click to Access:  Social Assistance Policy Development and the Provision of a Decent Level of Income in Selected OECD Countries
Willem Adema
The paper starts with a brief look at social expenditure patterns and the importance of different social policy areas, in particular the role of social assistance policy within social protection systems. It then looks at the objectives of social assistance policy and considers payment-rates in...
  N° 37   01 Aug 2006 Click to Access:  Measures of Material Deprivation in OECD Countries
Romina Boarini, Marco Mira d'Ercole
The paper discusses the use of material deprivation measures for an analysis of poverty in OECD countries. Its main goal is to identify suitable survey questions that might be used in comparative analysis, as a first step towards the construction of more satisfactory poverty measures. The...
  N° 36   15 June 2006 Click to Access:  From Inactivity to Work
Stéphane Carcillo, David Grubb
Many OECD countries have in recent decades experienced periods of relatively rapid growth in nonemployment benefit expenditures and recipiency rates which have not subsequently been reversed. By contrast, in a number of OECD countries the number of unemployment benefit recipients has declined...
  N° 35   09 June 2006 Click to Access:  Employment Patterns in OECD Countries
Andrea Bassanini, Romain Duval
This paper explores the impact of policies and institutions on employment and unemployment of OECD countries in the past decades. Reduced-form unemployment equations, consistent with standard wage setting/pricesetting models, are estimated using cross-country/time-series data from 21 OECD...
  N° 34   09 June 2006 Click to Access:  An Age Perspective on Economic Well-Being and Social Protection in Nine OECD Countries
Thai-Thanh Dang, Herwig Immervoll, Daniela Mantovani, Kristian Orsini, Holly Sutherland
For a number of reasons, incomes vary strongly with age. The nature of this variation is of interest for a wide range of policy purposes. Since age structures differ across countries, knowledge about the incomes earned by different age groups is also necessary for understanding and interpreting...
  N° 33   17 Feb 2006 Click to Access:  Alternative Measures of Well-Being
Romina Boarini, Åsa Johansson, Marco Mira d'Ercole
All discussions about the desirability of policy reforms rest on judgements about their effects on individuals and societal well-being. Yet, suitable measures for assessing how well-being is changing over time or compares across countries are lacking. This problem is, of course, not new and...
  N° 32   17 Feb 2006 Click to Access:  Social Disadvantage and Education Experiences
Stephen Machin
This paper discusses how social disadvantage affects the learning experiences of households with fewer economic resources, at each stage of the individuals' life-course, and on some of the "social" effects of such learning. It argues that while education can be an escalator out of social...
  N° 31   16 Dec 2005 Click to Access:  Can Parents Afford to Work?
Herwig Immervoll, David Barber
Finding a suitable balance of work and family life is not an easy task for parents who face multiple, and potentially conflicting, demands. Childcare policies play a crucial role in helping parents reconcile care and employment-related tasks. But inconsistent or poorly implemented policies can...
  N° 29   16 Dec 2005 Click to Access:  Net Social Expenditure, 2005 Edition
Willem Adema, Maxime Ladaique
This is the 2005 edition of a Net Social Expenditure paper that contains information on net (after tax) public and private social expenditure. These indicators supplement the detailed historical information on gross (before tax) publicly mandated social expenditure in the OECD Social...
  N° 30   07 Nov 2005 Click to Access:  Labour Protection in China
Anders Reutersward
One of the key institutional outcomes of China’s economic reforms has been to create a new role for employers that is separate from the state, and allows enterprises to concentrate on their business. To protect workers, the government has set up public institutions for many social and...
  N° 28   29 Sep 2005 Click to Access:  Welfare Reform in European Countries
Herwig Immervoll, Henrik Jacobsen Kleven, Claus Thustrup Kreiner, Emmanuel Saez
This paper estimates the welfare and distributional impact of two types of welfare reform in the 15 (pre-enlargement) member countries of the European Union. The reforms are revenue neutral and financed by an overall and uniform increase in marginal tax rates on earnings. The first reform...
  N° 27   02 Sep 2005 Click to Access:  Trends and Determinants of Fertility Rates
Anna Christina D'Addio, Marco Mira d'Ercole
This report tries to explain observed changes in fertility rates across OECD countries, with an emphasis on socio-economic considerations. It aims to extend the understanding of fertility-related behaviours in different ways: first, by explaining recent developments in fertility rates and their...
  N° 26   01 Sep 2005 Click to Access:  The "Enabling State?" from Public to Private Responsibility for Social Protection
Neil Gilbert
Policies designed to advance the march toward private financing and delivery of social services follow five main pathways. While some of these approaches to privatization are more direct and transparent than others, all may be pursued simultaneously. Three approaches concentrate on increasing...
  N° 24   29 July 2005 Click to Access:  Taxation, Ethnic Ties and the Location Choice of Highly Skilled Immigrants
Thomas Liebig, Alfonso Sousa-Poza
With the emerging international competition to attract highly skilled migrants, the determinants of their choice of residential location are increasing in importance. Besides expected wages and job opportunities, the costs of migration and the subjective evaluation of a location, two other...
  N° 25   22 June 2005 Click to Access:  Counting Immigrants and Expatriates in OECD Countries
Jean-Christophe Dumont, Georges Lemaître
Results presented in this paper based on the new database on immigrants and expatriates in OECD countries, show that (i) the percentage of the foreign-born in European OECD countries is generally higher than the percentage of foreigners; (ii) international migration is quite selective towards...
  N° 23   21 Mar 2005 Click to Access:  Should We Extend the Role of Private Social Expenditure?
Mark Pearson, John P. Martin
Some people make great claims about the advantages to be gained from greater reliance on the private sector for the provision of social protection. Many of the claims for great macroeconomic advantages do not stand up to scrutiny. However, there is some reason to hope that private provision...
  N° 22   10 Mar 2005 Click to Access:  Income Distribution and Poverty in OECD Countries in the Second Half of the 1990s
Michael F. Förster, Marco Mira d'Ercole
This report provides evidence on income distribution and poverty in 27 OECD countries over the second half of the 1990s, using data that correct for many of the features that limit cross-country and intertemporal comparisons in this field. Patterns for income distribution and relative poverty...
  N° 20   17 Dec 2004 Click to Access:  Benefit Coverage Rates and Household Typologies
Herwig Immervoll, Pascal Marianna, Marco Mira d'Ercole
The OECD regularly produces estimates of tax burdens and benefit entitlements for a range of "typical household" situations. The results of these calculations (published in the Benefits and Wages and Taxing Wages series) are frequently used to compare countries’ tax-benefit systems and to...
  N° 21   09 Dec 2004 Click to Access:  Design Choices in Market Competition for Employment Services for the Long-Term Unemployed
Ludo Struyven
Most Western countries have a long tradition of employment service provision by public bodies and non-profit organisations, but not by for-profit organisations. The creation of a quasi-market arrangement is not a simple choice for government. This paper underscores the difficulties and...
  N° 19   02 Dec 2004 Click to Access:  Average and Marginal Effective Tax Rates Facing Workers in the EU
Herwig Immervoll
Macro-based effective tax rate (ETR) measures do not provide information on the level or distribution of marginal effective tax rates thought to influence household behaviour. They also do not capture differences in average ETRs facing different population sub-groups. I use EUROMOD, an EUwide...
  N° 18   15 Mar 2004 Click to Access:  Indicators of Unemployment and Low-Wage Traps
Giuseppe Carone, Herwig Immervoll, Dominique Paturot, Aino Salomäki
This paper presents results from an on-going joint European Commission / OECD project, aimed at monitoring the direct influence of tax and benefit instruments on household incomes. The project uses and extends OECD tax-benefit models to compute a range of work incentive indicators such as...
  N° 17   08 Mar 2004 Click to Access:  Take-Up of Welfare Benefits in OECD Countries
Virginia Hernanz, Franck Malherbet, Michele Pellizzari
This report provides an overview of the limited empirical and theoretical research on take-up of welfare benefits, i.e. the extent to which people eligible for various types of benefits actually receive them. Focus is mainly on entitlement programmes, where take-up reflects both decisions of...
  N° 16   22 Jan 2004 Click to Access:  The Swedish Activity Guarantee
Anders Forslund, Daniela Froberg, Linus Lindqvist
Until recently, an unemployed person in Sweden who participated in an active labour market programme earned entitlement to a further 60 weeks of unemployment insurance (UI) benefits. A "carousel" effect - cycling between periods of open unemployment and participation in active programmes -...
  N° 14   19 Sep 2003 Click to Access:  National Versus Regional Financing and Management of Unemployment and Related Benefits
David Gray
Decentralization looms large in any analysis of Canadian economic and social policy. This trend has been especially pronounced in the area of unemployment insurance (UI) and social assistance (SA) programmes. Provinces now manage SA programmes and retain 100% of any cost savings that they...
  N° 13   12 Sep 2003 Click to Access:  The Competitive Market for Employment Services in the Netherlands
Ludo Struyven, Geert Steurs
OECD countries are increasingly interested in structuring government organisation and the financing of job brokerage and employment reintegration services to use market forces. In the Netherlands, the introduction of market mechanisms has been part of a search for a more coherent benefits and...
  N° 12   19 Aug 2003 Click to Access:  Towards Sustainable Development
Marco Mira d'Ercole, Andrea Salvini
Three main elements characterise the notion of sustainable development: first, a broad view of human well-being, in which environmental and social elements are important as well as economic ones; second, the view that many of the effects of today's decisions will last over time, thereby...
  N° 11   06 Aug 2003 Click to Access:  Individual Choice in Social Protection
Monika Queisser, Edward R. Whitehouse
In most OECD countries, the structure of the pension system does not give much potential for individual choice. The Swiss pension system is a particularly interesting case in this respect. Switzerland relies heavily on privately-managed, fully-funded pensions, which employers are obliged to...
  N° 10   09 July 2003 Click to Access:  Improving Workers' Skills
Wooseok Ok, Peter Tergeist
There is a wide consensus that workforce skills are an important determinant for economic growth. Alongside initial education, continuous education and training (hereafter referred to as CET) plays a key role in meeting these skill needs. This report examines possible positive impacts of CET on...
  N° 8   06 June 2003 Click to Access:  Financial Resources and Retirement in Nine OECD Countries
Gordon Keenay, Edward R. Whitehouse
Most countries give income-tax concessions to older people relative to people of working age. Some treat pension income more favourably than earnings, and most do not levy social security contributions on older people. These policies mean that the direct tax burden of older people is lower than...
  N° 9   06 June 2003 Click to Access:  The Value of Pension Entitlements
Edward R. Whitehouse
Pension systems are complex and comparing them across countries is therefore difficult. This paper adopts standard methodology to calculate prospective pension entitlements in nine countries. The modeling ncludes universal and resource-tested schemes, public and private earnings-related plans...
  N° 7   21 May 2003 Click to Access:  The Impact of Parental Leave Statutes on Maternal Return to Work after Childbirth in the United States
Sandra L. Hofferth, Sally C. Curtin
Although new mothers are more likely than ever to be in the labour force, the time around childbirth is a dynamic one, with women quitting work altogether or changing jobs to accommodate the demands of their infants. The passage of Family and Medical Leave legislation during the 1980s and early...
  N° 5   20 May 2003 Click to Access:  Child Labour in South Asia
Eric V. Edmonds
The International Labour Organization (ILO) estimates that 19% of children aged 5-14 in Asia and the Pacific are economically active (ILO, 2002). These 127.3 million children constitute 60% of all child labourers worldwide. The aim of this study is to better understand child labour in South...
  N° 6   20 May 2003 Click to Access:  Social Policies, Family Types and Child Outcomes in Selected OECD Countries
Sheila B. Kamerman, Michelle Neuman, Jane Waldfogel, Jeanne Brooks-Gunn
Child development and child well-being are major concerns in many OECD countries and are the subject of ongoing work at the OECD. These concerns have led to a search for policies to offset poverty, deprivation, vulnerability, and the risk factors that can trigger a lifelong cycle of...
  N° 4   28 Apr 2003 Click to Access:  Child Labour in Africa
Sonia Bhalotra
This paper presents an overview of child labour in Africa. It discusses the incidence and nature of child labour, possible causes, and actual and potential policy instruments. It answers some questions and raises others. Africa has the highest incidence of child labour in the world. While child...
  N° 1   13 Mar 2003 Click to Access:  Career Interruptions Due to Parental Leave
Elina Pylkkänen, Nina Smith
Parental leave mandates are associated with high female employment rates, but with reductions in relative female wages if leave is of extended durations. If fathers were given longer periods of leave, would it shorten the career breaks of women? We analyze the impact of family policies of...
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