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.
While women’s labor force participation tends to
increase with economic development, the relationship is not straightforward
or consistent at the country level. There is considerably more variation
across developing countries in labor force participation by women than by
men. This variation is driven by a wide variety of economic and social
factors, which include economic growth, education, and social norms. Looking
more broadly at improving women’s access to quality employment, a critical
policy area is enhancing women’s educational attainment beyond secondary
Work hours are key components in estimating
productivity growth and hourly wages as well as being a useful cyclical
indicator in their own right, so measuring them correctly is important. The
US Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) collects data on work hours in several
surveys and publishes three widely-used series that measure average weekly
hours. The series tell different stories about average weekly hours and
trends in those hours but qualitatively similar stories about the cyclical
behavior of work hours. The research summarized here explains the
differences in levels, but only some of the differences in trends.
Population aging will continue in the future, in
both developed and developing countries. This may lead to lower migration,
since the desire to migrate declines later in the life cycle. In addition,
indirect labor demand effects may also reduce migration. However, migration
of the elderly, return retirement migration, as well as mobility of certain
specialist workers such as health and longer-term care providers, may
increase. Also, in a family context, the emigration of children may have
significant consequences for the elderly left behind, both in terms of
poverty risk and health care.