Labor

Is Retirement Being Remade? Developments in Labor Market Patterns at Older Ages

Is Retirement Being Remade? Developments in Labor Market Patterns at Older Ages
In Recalibrating Retirement Spending and Saving, edited by John Ameriks and Olivia S. Mitchell. Oxford University Press, August 2008.

Sewin Chan & Ann Huff Stevens
08/01/2008

This chapter investigates non-traditional work and retirement patterns among older individuals in the Health and Retirement Study. It first reviews the evidence on retirements that initially involve bridge jobs or some form of partial retirement. It then looks at analysis on retirement reversals in which individuals resume or increase work activity following a period of retirement. Almost one third of the individuals in the sample who are ever partially or fully retired make at least one transition from more to less retired during the period of observation. The chapter also explores the characteristics of individuals making such transitions.

"What You Don't Know Can't Help You: Worker Knowledge and Retirement Decision-Making"

"What You Don't Know Can't Help You: Worker Knowledge and Retirement Decision-Making"
Review of Economics and Statistics, volume 90(2), May 2008

Sewin Chan & Ann Huff Stevens
05/01/2008

This paper provides an answer to an important empirical puzzle in the retirement literature: while most people know little about their own pension plans, retirement behavior is strongly affected by pension incentives. We combine administrative and self-reported pension data to measure the retirement response to actual and perceived financial incentives and document an important role for self-reported pension data in determining retirement behavior. Well-informed individuals are far more responsive to pension incentives than the average individual. Ill-informed individuals seem to respond systematically to their own misperceptions of pension incentives.

Ex Mex: From Migrants to Immigrants

Ex Mex: From Migrants to Immigrants
The New Press

Castaneda, J.
01/01/2008

From the massive nationwide rally in support of immigrant rights in May 2006 to protests against the increasingly frequent immigration raids across the country, the public debate on immigration reform has largely centered on Mexican immigrants. Yet, in the United States, we rarely hear the Mexican perspective on the issue.

In “portraits that defy American stereotypes of who is a Mexican immigrant” (Booklist), former Mexican foreign minister and eminent scholar Jorge G. Castañeda describes just who makes up the newest generation of immigrants from Mexico, why they have chosen to live in the United States, where they work, and what they ultimately hope to achieve. Drawing on his wide-ranging experience, Casteñeda examines the century-long historical background behind the labor exchange between Mexico and the United States, while offering an insider’s account of the official conversations and secret negotiations between the two countries in recent years.

Both authoritative and timely, Ex Mex is essential reading for all who want to make sense of the complex issue of immigration.

The President's Proposed Standard Deduction for Health Insurance: Evaluation and Recommendations

The President's Proposed Standard Deduction for Health Insurance: Evaluation and Recommendations
National Tax Journal, Sep 2007, Vol. 60 Issue 3, p433-454, 22p.

Burman, L.E., Furman, J., Leiserson, G. & Williams Jr, R.C.
09/01/2007

The President's proposal to replace the current exclusion of employer-paid health insurance premiums with a standard deduction for qualifying health insurance would level the playing field for employment-based coverage and private plans but would risk the loss of insurance for many workers, threaten existing risk- sharing pools, and unfairly favor the wealthy. This paper evaluates the President's plan, suggests changes that would improve it, and assesses alternatives that would address the plan's shortcomings and improve its likelihood of expanding coverage to many families who now lack insurance.

Notes from the Field: Jumpstarting the IRB Approval Process in Multicenter Studies

Notes from the Field: Jumpstarting the IRB Approval Process in Multicenter Studies
Health Services Research, Volume 42, Number 4, August 2007 , pp. 1773-1782(10) Blackwell Publishing.

Blustein, J., Regenstein, M., Seigel, B. & Billings, J.
08/01/2007

Objective. To identify strategies that facilitate readiness for local Institutional Review Board (IRB) review, in multicenter studies.

Study Setting. Eleven acute care hospitals, as they applied to participate in a foundation-sponsored quality improvement collaborative.

Study Design. Case series.

Data Collection/Extraction. Participant observation, supplemented with review of written and oral communications.

Principal Findings. Applicant hospitals responded positively to efforts to engage them in early planning for the IRB review process. Strategies that were particularly effective were the provisions of application templates, a modular approach to study description, and reliance on conference calls to collectively engage prospective investigators, local IRB members, and the evaluation/national program office teams. Together, these strategies allowed early identification of problems, clarification of intent, and relatively timely completion of the local IRB review process, once hospitals were selected to participate in the learning collaborative.

Conclusions. Engaging potential collaborators in planning for IRB review may help expedite and facilitate review, without compromising the fairness of the grant-making process or the integrity of human subjects protection.

Informal Work and Protest: Undocumented Immigrant Activism in France, 1996-2000

Informal Work and Protest: Undocumented Immigrant Activism in France, 1996-2000
British Journal of Industrial Relations, June 2007, Vol. 45 Issue 2, p309-334, 26p.

Iskander, N.
06/01/2007

Nominally, the wave of protests by undocumented immigrants that swept through France in the late 1990s successfully challenged the restrictive Pasqua immigration laws. However, despite appearances, the mass movement was at base a labour protest: undocumented workers demonstrated against immigration laws that undermined the way they navigated informal labour markets and, in particular, truncated their opportunities for skill development. Furthermore, it is proposed in this article that examining social movements for their labour content can reveal erosions of working conditions and worker power in informal sector employment. A case study of the Paris garment district is presented to demonstrate how the spread of ‘hybrid-informality' made legal work permits a prerequisite for working informally and relegated undocumented immigrants to lower quality jobs outside the cluster.

Welfare Program Performance

Welfare Program Performance
American Review of Public Administration, March, Vol. 37 Issue 1, p65-90, 26p.

Ratcliffe, C. & Nightingale, D.S. & Sharkey, P.
03/01/2007

Public agencies are increasingly expected to track their performance according to established criteria--to be held accountable for the expenditure of public funds and show that funds are being used to achieve intended outcomes. This analysis of South Carolina's Family Independence welfare program examines counties' performance on five employment-related outcomes: employment rate, employment entry rate, employment retention rate. earnings gain rate, and earned income closure rate. Counties' performance is statistically analyzed, adjusting for variation in external factors (e.g., labor market conditions and caseload characteristics) that influence program performance but that are outside the control of county program staff. This analysis shows that external factors influence employment-related performance, suggesting that states may want to vary counties' goals based on external factors, rather than expecting all counties to meet the same performance level. This analysis provides an example of how agencies can apply statistical analysis to measure, track, and analyze program performance.

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