We are pleased to announce the organization of the 19th IZA/SOLE Transatlantic Meeting of Labor Economists to be held at the Ammersee Conference Center in Bavaria, Germany, on July 9-12, 2020.
Does aid work?
July 2020Buch/Ammersee, Germany
August 2020Dublin, Ireland
The aim of the conference is to bring together researchers studying organisational issues from an international comparative perspective. Contributions based on all sources of enterprise data are welcomed.
September 2020Warsaw, Poland
Following the success of the 2016, 2018 and 2019 Jobs and Development Conferences in Washington DC and Bogotá, the World Bank, IZA (Institute of Labor Economics) the Network on Jobs and Development and UNU-WIDER are organizing a follow up conference in 2020.Bonn, Germany
The aim of the meeting is to bring together senior and junior researchers to discuss their most recent research related to labor market institutions.
3rd IDSC of IZA/University of Luxembourg Workshop: Matching Workers and Jobs Online - New Developments and Opportunities for Social Science and PracticeBonn, Germany
Like many forms of economic exchange, the process of matching workers to jobs has rapidly migrated online in the last two decades. Thus, understanding how online labor matching mechanisms work; how they affect economic outcomes like employment, wages, and inequality; and learning how to take advantages of the ‘big data’ that are generated by online markets all have important implications for the future of labor.Madrid, Spain
Leaders of the employment and recruitment industry, policymakers, academics, HR practitioners and trade unionists from around the world will come together with a single purpose: to exchange views on how to steer a labour market in transformation.
This panel discussion was hosted at the London School of Economics (LSE), with questions centered on global aid policies.
In his welcome address, IZA World of Labor’s Klaus F. Zimmermann told attendees how important collaboration was across academia and policy-makers, in order to enhance and improve modes of research.
He said: "Our approach was to bring in our expertise as labor economists and to talk with development economists about creating jobs to fight poverty to contribute to the debate: does aid help? It helps to find out whether people’s lives have become better. Evidence and policy evaluation is at the heart of the issue we’re dealing with here."
The World Bank’s David A. Robalino opened the discussion by advocating greater coordination among NGOs. He suggested that aid programs could be more effectively targeted if aid organizations made greater efforts to communicate with each other.
Robalino also noted that recent World Bank research on youth projects showed a mere 10% of programs have currently been evaluated, concluding that: "We need to create a coalition between academics and NGOs with a strong evaluation agenda."
This notion of evaluating aid programs was a key discussion point among the panelists. LSE’s Professor James Putzel highlighted the need for systematic and scientific evaluation, positing that development partners should be encouraged to evaluate their own work.
However, the speakers acknowledged the various obstacles preventing effective evaluation processes from being implemented. A core issue they discussed was the additional costs it would create, but LSE’s Gianmarco Ottaviano noted that greater use of technology is now helping countries to meet specific needs.
Of course, using technology efficiently requires a certain level of expertise, and Ottaviano said later that efforts to boost human capital and training can lead to skilled people moving to other countries with better prospects.
Ottaviano also touched upon problems stemming from national political conflict, which complicates intervention on a practical level. Nonetheless, he asserted that some programs, such as public works programs, have been shown to reduce the effects of poverty in countries where this is an issue.
The panel discussion then led to a lively debate with members of the audience, with questions surrounding: how aid programs should be regulated; whether programs should be shaped by aid recipients of donors; and whether we can improve internal governance in developing countries.
Some challenging points came from audience member Stefan Dercon, from the Department for International Development (DFID). He posited that the real question to ask was not "Does aid Work?" but "What do you do with the aid?" or "Where does aid work best?"
For Dercon, one of the first steps to improving aid should be finding ways to educate policymakers on up-to-date research, and nurturing partnerships to help them to govern their aid effectively.
The audience left the debate with plenty to think about. Poverty may seem an insurmountable problem, but the main message from these experts was one of continued communication, collaboration, and analysis. If academics, policymakers, and aid workers can work together and share their knowledge, we will all be better equipped to assess the current aid landscape, and improve how this aid is put in place.