The Effect of Making a Voluntary Labour Market Programme Compulsory: Evidence from a UK Experiment

Richard Dorsett, Deborah Smeaton, Stefan Speckesser

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

Abstract

This paper investigates the effects on employment and benefit receipt of making a voluntary active labour market programme compulsory. This policy change, which targeted long‐term unemployed people over the age of 50, was piloted in a number of areas within the UK and evaluated by individual random assignment of the requirement to participate. The results show that mandating participation resulted in a sustained increase in employment and a corresponding reduction in benefit receipt. The results were driven at least in part by a deterrent effect.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)467-489
JournalFiscal Studies
Volume34
Issue number4
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 12 Dec 2013

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