How Do Administrative Arrangements Affect Exit from Unemployment Payments? The Case of the Job Seeker Diary in Australia

Melbourne Institute Working Paper No. 27/03

Date: November 2003


Jeff Borland
Yi-Ping Tseng


This study examines the impact of the Jobseeker Diary program (JSD), a large-scale intervention designed to increase job search effort of unemployed persons in Australia. Its scale, and focus on work-search verification, make the JSD program relatively unique in the international context. Participation in the JSD is found to significantly increase the likelihood of an unemployment payment recipient exiting payments, and to reduce total time spent on payments. At least one-half of JSD participants are estimated to have reduced time on payments. Largest effects of the JSD occur for payment recipients for whom labour demand conditions are the most 'favourable'. The findings on the impact of the JSD are robust to a wide range of sensitivity checks.

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