Evidence-based policy making

IZA World of Labor is an online platform that provides policy analysts, journalists, academics and society generally with relevant and concise information on labor market issues. Based on the latest research, it provides current thinking on labor markets worldwide in a clear and accessible style. IZA World of Labor aims to support evidence-based policy making and increase awareness of labor market issues, including current concerns like the impact of Covid-19, and longer-term problems like inequality.

View our content on Covid-19—Pandemics and the labor market 

featured article

Disability and labor market outcomes 

Updated

Disability is associated with labor market disadvantage; evidence points to this being a causal relationship

Melanie Jones

In Europe, about one in eight people of working age report having a disability; that is, a long-term limiting health condition. Despite the introduction of a range of legislative and policy initiatives designed to eliminate discrimination and facilitate retention of and entry into work, disability is associated with substantial and enduring labor market disadvantage in many countries. Identifying the reasons for this is complex, but critical to determine effective policy solutions that reduce the extent, and social and economic costs, of disability-related disadvantage.

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  • Who benefits from return migration to developing countries? Updated

    Despite returnees being a potential resource, not all low- and middle-income countries benefit from their return

    Jackline Wahba , December 2021
    Return migration can have multiple benefits. It allows migrants who have accumulated savings abroad to ease credit constraints at home and set up a business. Also, emigrants from low- and middle-income countries who have invested in their human capital may earn higher wages when they return. However, whether the home country benefits from return migrants depends on the migrant's success in accumulating savings and human capital and on the home country's ability to make use of returnees’ skills and investment. To benefit from returnees, home countries need policies that encourage returnees’ investment and labor market reintegration.
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  • Gender differences in competitiveness Updated

    To what extent can different attitudes toward competition for men and women explain the gender gap in labor markets?

    Mario Lackner , November 2021
    Differences in labor market outcomes for women and men are highly persistent. Apart from discrimination, one frequently mentioned explanation could be differences in the attitude toward competition for both genders. Abundant empirical evidence indicates that multiple influences shape attitudes toward competition during different periods of the life cycle. Gender differences in competitiveness will not only influence outcomes during working age, but also during early childhood education. In order to reduce the gender gap in educational and labor market outcomes, it is crucial to understand when and why gender gaps in competitiveness arise and to study their consequences.
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  • Labor market policies, unemployment, and identity Updated

    Policies to help the unemployed can affect feelings of identity and well-being, so measures need to be evaluated carefully

    Ronnie Schöb , November 2021
    Unemployment not only causes material hardship but can also affect an individual's sense of identity (i.e. their perception of belonging to a specific social group) and, consequently, feelings of personal happiness and subjective well-being. Labor market policies designed to help the unemployed may not overcome their misery: wage subsidies can be stigmatizing, measures that require some work or attendance for training from those receiving benefits (workfare) may not provide the intended incentives, and a combination of an unregulated labor market and policy measures that bring people who became unemployed quickly back to work (flexicurity) may increase uncertainty. Policies aimed at bringing people back to work should thus take the subjective well-being of the affected persons more into consideration.
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  • Do rising returns to education justify “helicopter” parenting?

    Increased stakes in educational achievement explain why today’s anxious parents engage in intensive parenting styles

    Parents now engage in much more intensive parenting styles compared to a few decades ago. Today’s parents supervise their children more closely, spend more time interacting with them, help much more with homework, and place more emphasis on educational achievement. More intensive parenting has also led to more unequal parenting: highly educated parents with high incomes have increased their parenting investments the most, leading to a growing “parenting gap” in society. These trends can contribute to declining social mobility and further exacerbate rising inequality, which raises the question of how policymakers should respond.
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  • Jan 07, 2022 - Jan 09, 2022

    American Economic Association - ASSA 2022 Virtual Annual Meeting

    Online

    The AEA, in conjunction with 64 associations in related disciplines known as the Allied Social Science Associations (ASSA), holds a three-day meeting each January to present papers on general economics topics.

  • Feb 18, 2022 - Feb 19, 2022

    PILLARS Conference on Education, Skills, and Worker Retraining

    Munich, Germany

    The purpose of the conference is to bring together researchers from a broad range of economic fields to discuss ongoing research on the future of work. Papers investigating skill requirements in the digital age and how (re-)training may help workers to adapt to changing work environments and new skill demand are of particular interest.

  • Feb 24, 2022 - Feb 25, 2022

    14th FIW-Research Conference 'International Economics'

    Vienna, Austria

    The main objective of the conference is to provide a platform for economists working in the field of ‘International Economics’ to present recent research. The broad topic of the conference is ‘International Economics’. This includes, inter alia, International Trade, International Factor Movements, Economic Integration, Trade Policy, International Trade Organizations, Economic Growth of Open Economies, Multinational Firms, Global Value Chains, International Macroeconomics and other related fields.

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