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What kind of remedial interventions work for the long-term unemployed?

Since the recent economic crisis, long-term unemployment  has become a serious problem in a large number of European countries. What kind of interventions can successfully help those who have been unemployed for years? What are the feasible and cost-effective practices and for whom?

According to our results, it seems that those who have been out of work for a long period, need a combination of two measures. First, individualised services based on a detailed assessment of the individuals’ barriers and needs, second personalised supervision of their progress is the basic building bloc to a successful re-integration strategy. 

Cost-benefit analysis of remedial interventions for the long-term unemployed

In general, it seems that individualised services not only help a higher proportion of long-term unemployed in successfully finding appropriate employment, but it can also be a cost-effective strategy in the long term.

However, the results also show that there is no universal solution: what works in one country might be less feasible and cost-effective in others, depending on the institutional framework and the number of long-term unemployed. For details you can access the study here. The results contributed to the preparation of the recommendations of the European Commission.

The report analysed, - through an overview of 46 evaluation studies - the following policy options: integrating service provision, reinforced individualised services and measures, and formalising rights and obligations in written agreements. The study also assessed the current practices and costs of service provision for the long-term unemployed in five European countries. Finally, the authors estimated the potential costs and benefits of the introduction and extension of different policy options for the five case study countries.

The paper was written by BI expert Márton Csillag (together with M. Fertig) for the ICON Institute, contracted by the European Commission to assess the cost-effectiveness of a number of policy interventions for the reintegration of the long term unemployed to the labour market. 

Project details
ClientICON Institute
Project leader Márton Csillag
Duration25/02/2015 - 02/08/2015