Education, Skill Acquisition, and Labour

Issues related to education and employment are major policy concerns in both rich and poor countries: for example, how much to invest in education, how to fund that investment, where to invest (for example, universities versus colleges versus apprenticeship training). Estimates of the returns to different kinds of education are central in discussions of these issues. Of equal policy interest are the design and effects of labour market institutions. In Canada the focus of this debate has been the design and effects of the Employment Insurance program. Parallel debates go on in other countries. The research of members of this area has addressed both of these issues. As one example of how our members contribute to the Canadian policy debate, Profs. Smith and Hunt have served as academic directors on a project examining the role of apprenticeship programs in Canada in collaboration with the Human Resources and Skills Development Canada (HRSDC) and the Canadian Labour Market and Skills Researcher Network (CLSRN). Other examples of publications and on-going projects are: labour market institutions and growth in poor countries; the effect of France’s 35 hour work week; the integration of women into the labour market in South Asia; education and labour supply in Peru; self-employment and the returns to education; the character and effects of training in Quebec as compared to other Canadian provinces and regions; income support programs and post job-loss income in the US, Canada, and Australia; and the effects of the Employment Insurance reforms in Canada in the 1990s.

Members working in this area: Sébastien BreauMatthieu Chemin, Franque Grimard, Sonia Laszlo, Anthony Masi, Theodore Papageorgiou, Michael Smith, Erin Strumpf, and Axel van den Berg