IZA World of Labor provides decision-makers with relevant and succinct information based on sound empirical evidence to help in formulating good policies and best practices. It provides expert know-how in an innovative structure, and a clear and accessible style.
Program evaluation provides an overview of the effectiveness of a variety of policies that have been tested in diverse settings across various countries. The knowledge provided suggests whether or not the individual and the economy fair better without the measures studied.
Behavioral economics analyzes the emotional and cognitive factors that influence the decisions of actors. Personnel economics analyzes the internal organizational strategy of the firm and the human resource management practices chosen to pursue that strategy.
Mobility is important for the functioning of markets and society. Migration deals with issues of national and international mobility, such as demand and supply, and what migration means for natives and migrants and for sending and receiving countries.
Institutions have important consequences for the performance of households, companies, governments and entire markets; they determine the welfare of nations. Contributions explore the underlying mechanisms and the politico-economic determinants of such structures.
The transformation of economic systems from plan to market in transition and emerging economies has significant consequences not only for labor markets in those countries. Their lessons can also guide the development of institutions and labor reform policies in other countries.
Low-income countries differ from higher-income countries in that they have large informal sectors, greater prevalence of self-employment and subsistence agriculture, low female labor participation rates and poor labor market conditions. As labor is most often the only asset of someone in poverty, policies that are not associated with job creation may fail to reduce poverty. Hence, development deals with the potential of labor economics to address those challenges.
Optimal environmental policy aims at equalizing benefits and costs of improving environmental quality. While the benefits generally accrue in the form of increased health, worker productivity, quality of life, and amenity values, the costs of environmental regulations are mostly borne through impacts on industrial activity and labor market outcomes. Successful policy development requires information on the connection between environmental regulations, labor markets, and industrial activity.
Education shows great resilience to shocks—labor demand for highly skilled workers has remained high in all kinds of economic conditions. Public policy for education and human capital include increasing the economic and social returns on education, fostering greater educational attainment, encouraging social and economic mobility, and providing vocational education, training, and lifelong learning.
Population characteristics strongly predict labor market success. One of the biggest economic changes has been the rise of women in the labor market. The upcoming demographic imbalances suggest substantial adjustment processes on labor markets around the globe. Empirical evidence relating social, cultural, and biological processes to worker well-being is also provided.
Data are the foundation for evidence-based research. Therefore, the value of different types of data collection is made transparent. Important statistical and econometric methods are explained that provide instruments to condense information and to identify and quantify correlation or causality.
The rise in the average age of women bearing
their first child is a well-established demographic trend in recent decades.
Postponed childbearing can have important consequences for the mother and,
at a macro level, for the country as a whole. Research has focused on the
effect postponing fertility has on the labor market outcomes for mothers and
on the total number of children a woman has in her lifetime. Most research
finds that postponing the first birth raises a mother’s labor force
participation and wages but may have negative effects on overall fertility,
especially in the absence of supportive family-friendly policies.
Employees show more commitment to an employer
that promotes the greater good, and they work harder too. Moreover, many
people are willing to give up some of their compensation to contribute to a
social cause. Being able to attract a motivated workforce would be
particularly important for the public sector, but this goal remains elusive.
Indeed, there is evidence for the public sector that paying people more or
underlining the career opportunities (as opposed to the social aspects)
associated with public sector jobs is instrumental in attracting a more
productive workforce, without having a negative impact on intrinsic
In many countries, the minimum wages and working
conditions set in collective bargaining contracts negotiated by a limited set of
employers and unions are subsequently extended to all the employees in an industry.
Those extensions ensure common working conditions within the industry, limit wage
inequality, and reduce gender wage gaps. However, several studies suggest that those
benefits come at the cost of reduced employment levels, especially during recessions.
The income losses of workers who are displaced because of a collective contract
extension can offset the wage gains among workers who keep their jobs.