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Bridging Research and Practice
The contributors to this book provide a provocative assessment of the effectiveness of various policies and practices designed to help disadvantaged segments of our population overcome the obstacles in their path to upward economic mobility.
Business Organization and High-Tech Employment in the United States
Lazonick explores the origins of the new era of employment insecurity and income inequality, and considers what governments, businesses, and individuals can do about it. He also asks whether the United States can refashion its high-tech business model to generate stable and equitable economic growth.
The Labor Market for Workers in Low-Skilled Jobs
Maxwell presents the results of her groundbreaking survey of 405 employers, which queried them about jobs requiring no more than a high school education and no more than one year of work experience. These data allow her to establish the link between skills and low-skilled jobs and to reveal the current state of the labor market facing low-skilled workers. The data also highlights the knowledge and skills that employers require in low-skilled jobs and the abilities that individuals who apply for those jobs bring to the table.
Basing their analysis on the American Time Use Survey, Connelly and Kimmel delve into the time use of mothers of preteenaged children in the United States and connect their time uses with their childrens development. This leads to interesting findings that should inform policymakers addressing issues related to taxation, education, and child care subsidies.
Was It Beneficial for Workers?
The share of Americans with defined contribution pension plans now exceeds the share of those with defined benefit plans. Wolff refers to this as the "great transformation" and it leads him to examine recent evidence to see whether there are winners and losers resulting from this switch away from traditional pension plans.
Designing and Managing Employment Programs in New York City
Feldman presents a case study of how New York City's welfare-to-work programs were managed and implemented in the mid-2000s. It is a performance analysis, using both qualitative and quantitative methods to examine the operations and performance of 26 nonprofit and for-profit welfare-to-work programs. The book draws on individual-level data on more than 14,000 participants, and the use of nonsystematic assignment of clients creates a natural experiment that assists in comparing program performance.
Restructuring and Geographic Change in the Auto Industry
This book offers a comprehensive look at an industry whose role in motor vehicle production in the United States has been growing. Klier and Rubenstein make use of a unique database containing information on thousands of parts plants in the United States, Canada, and Mexico. This allows them to produce an analysis of the motor vehicle parts supplier industry at a level of detail not seen before. It also allows them to meet the two main goals they set out to achieve. The first is to present the key characteristics of the vast network of parts suppliers. The second goal of the book is to describe the changing geography of U.S. motor vehicle production at the local, regional, national, and international levels. In doing that, Klier and Rubenstein illustrate the challenges in store for motor vehicle parts production in the United States and especially in the Midwest.
Implementation Experiences and Evaluation Findings
Douglas J. Besharov and Phoebe H. Cottingham present a group papers that provide the most comprehensive and up-to-date look yet at WIAs program performance and impact. The papers were commissioned for a meeting held with staff of the European Commission for a discussion of WIA lessons and the implications for future workforce programming in the United States as well as Europe. They are organized into five areas: 1) understanding WIA, 2) program implementation, 3) performance management, 4) impact evaluations, and 5) future evaluation choices. In addition, they detail how WIA performance management systems function and present various evaluation techniques for assessing workforce programs.