OECD Development Centre Working Papers

The OECD Development Centre links OECD members with developing and emerging economies and fosters debate and discussion to seek creative policy solutions to emerging global issues and development challenges. This series of working papers is intended to disseminate the OECD Development Centre’s research findings rapidly among specialists in the field concerned. These papers are generally available in the original English or French, with a summary in the other language.

English, French

What Can Developing Countries Learn from OECD Labour Market Programmes and Policies?

Many OECD Member countries and a large number of the developing countries are suffering from extensive unemployment, both in short and long-term forms. Based on a five-part schema of labour market problems, this paper summarises and evaluates the effectiveness of labour market policies and programmes in the OECD countries and assesses the relevance of the experience to economies in transition, dynamic non-Member economies and developing countries in general. The overall conclusion is that such policies have not proven very effective in dealing with the most pressing problems in most types of economy (the dynamic non- Member economies being the main exception), that is, high and persistent unemployment, both short term and long term. Nevertheless, there are a variety of active labour market policies which are of help with some other types of problem. In general, the developing countries would be well advised not to invest too heavily in socalled passive measures; thus, a social ...


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