In a far-ranging reform to German social legislation, unemployment and social assistance have been joined into a common framework in 2005. This has brought about major organisational changes. In most cases, employment offices and municipal administrations have established joint consortiums in order to support recipients and place them into the labour market. However, an experimentation clause allows 69 municipal administrations to compete with the consortiums and to explore alternative means of reintegration. In this project, the relative success and weakness of these two models will be investigated. A combined data set of official register data and individual-level data from a survey conducted among 25,000 recipients will be used. As opposed to the evaluation of individual active labour market programmes and policies, the focus is on the effectiveness of the entire activation process as well as on the efficiency of different institutional arrangements within consortiums or municipalities.

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