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The Effects of Welfare‐to‐Work Program Activities on Labor Market Outcomes

Andrew Dyke, Carolyn J. Heinrich, Peter R. Mueser, Kenneth R. Troske and Kyung‐Seong Jeon
Journal of Labor Economics
Vol. 24, No. 3, Program Evaluation, Human Capital, and Labor Market Public Policy: A Research Conference in Honor of Mark C. BergerWilliam R. Johnson, Coeditor, and James P. Ziliak, Guest CoeditorSponsored by UK Center for Poverty Research, Department of Economics, Center for Business and Economic Research, Gatton College of Business and Economics, and Office of the Executive Vice President for Research at the University of Kentucky; and The W. E. Upjohn Institute for Employment ResearchProgram Evaluation, Human Capital, and Labor Market Public Policy: A Research Conference in Honor of Mark C. BergerWilliam R. Johnson, Coeditor, and James P. Ziliak, Guest CoeditorSponsored by UK Center for Poverty Research, Department of Economics, Center for Business and Economic Research, Gatton College of Business and Economics, and Office of the Executive Vice President for Research at the University of Kentucky; and The W. E. Upjohn Institute for Employment Research (July 2006), pp. 567-607
DOI: 10.1086/504642
Stable URL: http://www.jstor.org/stable/10.1086/504642
Page Count: 41
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The Effects of Welfare‐to‐Work Program Activities on Labor Market Outcomes
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Abstract

Studies examining welfare‐to‐work program effectiveness present mixed and sometimes discrepant findings, partly due to research design, data, and methodological limitations. Using administrative data on Missouri and North Carolina welfare recipients, we substantially improve on past estimation approaches to identify the distinct effects of each state’s welfare‐to‐work subprograms—assessment, job search assistance and job readiness training, and more intensive programs designed to augment human capital. More intensive training is associated with greater initial earnings losses but also greater long‐run earnings gains. The negative program impacts we observe in quarters immediately following participation turn positive by the second year after participation.

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