Labor Markets

J-PAL’s Labor Markets sector evaluates what works to get the unemployed back into the workforce, to ease young people’s transitions from the classroom to the working world, and to provide the skills entrepreneurs need to succeed.

The Youth Initiative seeks to evaluate policies and interventions that can help disadvantaged youth to successfully navigate the transition from adolescence to adulthood. This includes policies to promote integration of youth into the labor force, foster entrepreneuriship, enhance life skills, and help youth avoid risky behavior.

The Skills for Youth Program (SYP) seeks to identify and rigorously evaluate innovative solutions designed to improve youth employment in Latin America. Specifically, one of its goals is to address the mismatch or disconnect between youth skills and the labor market’s demands. SYP is currently accepting proposals, which are due 5:00 PM ET on Friday, April 14th 2017.

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Promoting High Impact Entrepreneurship in Mexico

A lack of access to finance can impede the potential for growth among small firms. To meet this finance gap and to encourage high-growth entrepreneurship, governments and multilateral agencies...


David Atkin

David Atkin is an Assistant Professor in the Economics Department at MIT. His research focuses on evaluating the impacts of trade liberalization on the poor in the developing world. His recent work...


Scaling and Unpacking a Successful Summer Jobs Program

Recent studies have found that summer youth employment programs appear to generate large declines in the rates of violent crime—a significant finding for urban policymakers seeking to create safer,...


Job Placement and Displacement

Career counseling for young, college-educated job seekers in France helped them find work sooner, but this improvement came at the expense of jobs for those who did not receive counseling, and it did...


The Impacts of Cash for Work and Psychosocial Support on Vulnerable Youth in Liberia

In Liberia, researchers evaluated the impacts of a cash for work program and a psychosocial support program on the behavior and labor outcomes of young people. Results indicate that psychosocial...


Moving to Opportunity

Neighborhoods matter for the well-being of residents. Helping families with young children living in high-poverty housing projects to move to lower-poverty neighborhoods improves the later-life...