Can Training Turn the Tide? Migrant-Native Differentials in the Uptake and Effects of Active Labour Market Policies in Belgium

Tair Kasztan Flechner , University of Antwerp
Karel Neels, University of Antwerp
Jonas Wood, University of Antwerp
Julie Maes, University of Antwerp

Although migration became the main driver of population change in Belgium in recent decades, migrant´s (first and later generations) labour market integration exhibits persisting challenges. Public interventions introduce what is called Active Labour Market Policies which are assumed to facilitate the transition from unemployment into paid work, regardless of migration background. Given the strong emphasis on such programs, this study addresses differential uptake and effects of three types of training programs in Belgium (Workplace training, Occupation Specific, and General Orientation) by migration background (non-migrant background, second generation of European, second generation of non-Europeans). We use unique longitudinal administrative data from two different government organizations in a total sample of 17,991 individuals between 18 and 65 years old who legally resided in Belgium on 1st January 2005 and their household members. Data is recorded quarterly between 1st January 2005 and 31st December 2016. Consistent with previous research, preliminary results show that the uptake gets more segregated as closer the type of training is to real employment. At the same time, as closer is the training to actual employment the larger the impact. Moreover, if we analyse by migrant background, we find that the Workplace training (the one closer to employment), shows no statistical different effect by migrant background. However, Occupation Specific and on General Orientation trainings do present statistically significant differences in the effect of participating in training between non-migrant background population and non-European background population. There is no statistically significant differences between non-migrants and second generation of Europeans.

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 Presented in Session 77. Immigrants' Structural Integration II: Education