Information, reflection, and successful job search: A labor market policy experiment


Jobseekers, especially young people with little experience on the job market, face several challenges. They need to know which jobs are suited for them, where to find them, how to apply, and they need resilience in the face of repeated rejections. Previous research has shown that receiving information and reflecting on how to search for a job enhance self-efficacy and search motivation, thereby reducing the duration of unemployment spells. Following up on these results, we conducted an experiment in cooperation with the Austrian Ministry of Social Affairs which combines an “information nudge” in the form of a short video-clip with what we call “reflection nudge” in the form of an online survey. We find that a treatment combining reflection and information reduces job search duration of young unemployed people with a low level of formal education. Considering the low costs of the intervention, efficiency is very high.

Social Policy & Administration