“We (Mr. Rosen and I) had sent you our manuscript for publication and hat not authorized you to show it to specialists before it is printed. I see no reason to address the - in any case erroneous - comments of your anonymous expert.”

- Albert Einstein -

The Value of Apprentices in the Care Sector: The Effect of Apprenticeship Costs on the Mobility of Graduates from Apprenticeship Training

published in 2021 in Empirical Research in Vocational Education and Training 13: 1-21. Link

This paper provides evidence on the effect of apprenticeship costs on the decision whether care facilities employ apprenticeship graduates after completing apprenticeship training. To account for the endogeneity in apprenticeship costs, we exploit an exogenous reduction in the apprenticeship costs of care facilities by exploiting the fact that the underlying apprenticeship levy was introduced across the German federal states at different points in time. We find that the redistribution of apprenticeship costs increases the probability of leaving the training facility after completing apprenticeship training by 10 percentage points. Furthermore, we use this quasi-experimental setting to estimate the effect of mobility of graduates on their wages, which hints on a negative relationship.

Combining Parenthood and Work: Transmission Channels and Heterogenous Returns to Early Public Childcare.

with Mohammed Azaouagh (University of Duisburg-Essen)

published in 2021 in the Review of Economics of the Household 19(3): 641-676. Link

We exploit local and temporal variation in the availability of public childcare for children under the age of three that induces exogenous variation in childcare attendance. We find a weak average treatment effect (ATE) on maternal labor supply. Estimating average treatment effects is interesting in terms of gaining a first impression. However, examining selection behavior and estimating marginal treatment effects along the distribution of observables and unobservables that drive individual treatment decisions reveal transmission channels and uncover substantial heterogeneity in marginal returns from public childcare reforms. By estimating marginal returns, we detect reverse selection on gains at the intensive margin, whereas a substantial share (40 percent) of mothers with median desire to public childcare react with increased probability to work full time. Thus, if the supply of public childcare is expanded from a modest to a more generous level of coverage, those with average resistance towards early public childcare do gain. At the extensive margin, positive selection on gains is found; therefore, only a small fraction of mothers with the lowest resistance to early public childcare shift from non-employment to part-time jobs.

Do Ethnic Networks Ameliorate Education-Occupation Mismatch?

published in 2020 in LABOUR, 34(4): 441-476. Link

The question to what extent ethnic networks affect occupational mismatch has so far been overlooked. This paper exploits supraregional variation in ethnic composition in Germany and shows that a one standard deviation increase in the share of the own ethnic group per zip code significantly reduces the years of overqualification for females, by 0.27 years. For males, neither the foreign share nor the ethnic share per residency area is found to significantly impact the extent of overqualification. Selection into residency groups and occupations and different endowments in language capital explain the more efficient benefit of ethnic networks accrued to females.


Substantial Labor Market Effects of the Residency Status. How Important are Initial Conditions At Arrival for Immigrants?

published in 2020 in the Journal of International Migration and Integration, 21(4): 993-1026. Link

This study uses information about the legal status upon arrival to study long-term labor market effects of residency status. I find that immigrants who arrived with a job commitment in Germany gain a long-term income advantage of 18.6% compared with other migration groups. The results underline the importance of initial conditions at arrival for the labor market integration of immigrants. In fact, the residency status at arrival affects employment status and labor market income after decades, while selective out-migration and observable selection are taken into account. Further examinations demonstrate that the effects are driven by occupational choice and education. In particular, immigrants with middle or high education and immigrants employed in white-collar or public service jobs benefit from a job commitment at arrival. The income penalty of asylum seekers is found in each education group.

The Impact of Language Skills on Immigrants’ Labor Market Integration: A Brief Revision With a New Approach

published in 2018 in the B.E. Journal of Economic Analysis and Policy, No. 18(4): 1-19. Link

I examine the impact of language skills on immigrants’ labor market performance by applying a new approach, which allows to estimate wage benefits attributed to initial language skills at arrival. By exploiting unique data, I isolate the endogenous part of current German skills and instrument current command by German proficiency measured retrospectively at the point in time of migration. This approach tackles the problem that labor market effects from current language skills are at risk to reflect merely the sum of a successful residence in Germany and only display growth effects. I find that a good command of German increases labor market income by 47.0% for males, while no significant language effects are detected for females. Further analyses illustrate that differences in language effects by gender can be attributed to selection into different occupations and part-time employments and that language operates complementary and enables cross-border transferability of human capital.

Working Paper and Current Research

Childlessness in Germany: Does the Expansion of Early Public Childcare Increase Germany's Fertility?

with Mohammed Azaouagh (University of Duisburg-Essen)

Revised & resubmitted (with minor revisions) to the Bulletin of Economic Research

We use quasi-experimental expansion of public childcare slots for children under the age of three from Germany and exploit regional variations of this large-scale expansion to account for endogenous and selective fertility decisions. To account for left and right censoring, we implement this quasi-experimental framework into the setting of the semiparametric Cox hazard model. We find a significant increase in fertility by 11.7 percent for childless couples who were in the labor force before childbearing. However, at the intensive margin of fertility, no significant effects are found. With a particular focus on childlessness, the effects are demonstrated not to be driven by selective residency choices, and that childlessness is also significantly reduced after accounting for internal migration patterns. Furthermore, a large set of robustness checks is applied to show that highly educated mothers react the most, while effects are not attributable to the upper decile of income distribution.

Heterogeneity in Marginal Returns to Language Training of Immigrants

with Matthias Giesecke (RWI, IZA)

Revised & resubmitted to the Economics of Education Review; published as Ruhr Economics Paper No 812, IAB Discussion Paper No. 19/2019. Link

Media coverage: Süddeutsche Zeitung

We estimate the effect of language training on subsequent employment and wages of immigrants under essential heterogeneity. The identifying variation is based on regional differences in language training availability that we use to instrument endogenous participation. Estimating marginal treatment effects along the distribution of observables and unobservables that drive individual participation decisions, we find that immigrants with higher gains are more likely to select into language training than immigrants with lower gains. We document up to 15 percent higher employment rates and 13 percent wage gains for immigrants with a high desire to participate but the positive returns vanish with increasing resistance to treatment. This pattern of selection on gains correlates with unobserved ability and motivation, promoting investments in education and job-specific skills that yield higher returns when complemented by language capital in the host country.

Beyond Windfall Gains: The Redistribution of Apprenticeship Costs and Vocational Education of Care Workers

Submitted; published as Working Paper at the Swiss Leading House Economics of Education No 176. Link

We estimate the causal effect exerted by substantial redistribution of care worker apprenticeship costs on the training supply of care facilities. We exploit the fact that the apprenticeship levy was introduced across the German federal states at different points in time. For ambulatory care, we find a positive effect on the probability of hiring new apprentices and on the number of new apprentices in the short and in the longer run. For inpatient care facilities, the probability of providing apprenticeship training is not affected, but positive effects emerge in respect of the number of new apprentices in the medium run.

Work on Progress

The Effect of Immigration on the Provision of Apprenticeship Training by Firms
Quasi-Experimental Evidence from the EU Enlargement

Vocational Aspirations and Choices During A Pandemic - Gender Effects and Consequences for Social Inequality

The Effect of Local Conditions and Language Training on the Labor Market Integration of Refugees
Policy Consulting

Schuss, Eric; Christ, Alexander; Milde, Bettina; Oeynhausen, Stephanie; Flemming, Simone; Granath, Ralf-Olaf (2021):
Die Entwicklung des Ausbildungsmarktes im Jahr 2021. BIBB-Fachbeitrag, Bonn. Link

Schuss, Eric; Christ, Alexander; Eberhard, Verena; Heinecke, Marcel; Neuber-Pohl, Caroline (2021): Bildungs- und Berufsorientierungsangebote für ausbildungsinteressierte Jugendliche während der Corona-Pandemie: Empirische Analysen auf Basis der BA/BIBB-Bewerberbefragung 2018 und 2020, BIBB-Preprint, Bonn.

Brücker, Herbert; Kosyakova, Yuliya; Schuss, Eric (2020): Fünf Jahre seit der Fluchtmigration 2015: Integration in Arbeitsmarkt und Bildungssystem macht weitere Fortschritte, IAB Brief Report No. 4/2020, Nuremberg. Link

Brücker, Herbert; Fuchs, Johann; Schuss, Eric; Söhnlein, Doris; Trübswetter, Parvati; Weber, Enzo (2019): Brief Expertise Immigration. Kommission Verlässlicher Generationenvertrag beim Bundesministerium für Arbeit und Soziales, Berlin. Link

Brücker, Herbert; Jaschke, Philipp; Schuss, Eric; Trübswetter, Parvati (2019): On the Integration of Refugees into the German Labour Market. Comment of the IAB on the hearing in the German Council of Economic Experts on 9 October 2019, IAB Comment No. 19/2019, Nuremberg. Link

Brücker, Herbert; Jaschke, Philipp; Schuss, Eric (2019): Zum Gesetzesentwurf der Bundesregierung zur Förderung der Ausbildung und Beschäftigung von Ausländerinnen und Ausländern - Ausländerbeschäftigungsförderungsgesetz. Comment of the IAB on the hearing in the Committee for Labour and Social Affairs of the German Bundestag on 3 June 2019, IAB Comment No. 10/2019, Nuremberg. Link