Current Projects / Available Research

Current Projects

  1. Evaluation of the Unemployment Compensation Provisions of the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act of 2009
  2. Research Study of Unemployment Exhaustees
  3. Evaluation of the Army Unemployment Compensation for Ex-Military Members Claimants Initiative
  4. Short-Time Compensation Program Study — Employer Survey
  5. Short-Time Compensation Program Study — Demonstration Project
  6. National Longitudinal Study of Unemployment Insurance Recipients
  7. Unemployment Insurance Financing and Alternative Experience Rating Methods Study
  8. Reemployment and Eligibility Assessment (REA) Demonstration Project
  9. National Unemployment Insurance State Reemployment Demonstrations Evaluation Project

Recently Completed Available Research

  1. Evaluation of the Unemployment Insurance Benefits Program
  2. SUTA Dumping Detection System
  3. Reed Act Distribution Implementation Study
  4. Strengthening the Connection between UI Remote Services and One-Stop Center Services Demonstration Project
  5. Study to Improve Worker Profiling Models
  6. Reemployment and Eligibility Assessment (REA) Study Comparison Group
  7. Evaluation of the Re-Employment and Eligibility Assessment Initiative and Report to Congress on REAs — 2011
  8. Impact of the Re-Employment and Eligibility Assessment Initiative in Nevada

Current Projects

  1. Evaluation of the Unemployment Insurance Compensation Provisions of the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act of 2009

    In September 2010 a contract was awarded to Mathematica Policy Research, in conjunction with the Urban Institute, to conduct an evaluation of the Unemployment Compensation (UC) provisions of the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act of 2009 (ARRA).

    The evaluation’s overarching objective is to determine the overall efficiency and effectiveness of the UC-related provisions in ARRA. In particular, the project will address important questions relating to Extended Benefits (EB) and benefits that became available through the Emergency Unemployment Compensation Act of 2008, such as the following: How well did the expansions included under ARRA and related programs meet the needs of unemployed workers during the recent recession? How did these expansions and programs affect workers, labor supply, and other decisions? How did the ARRA financial incentives for states affect their EB-related policy decisions, especially those related to the sequencing of EB? What administrative difficulties did states encounter in providing EUC08 benefits and related enhancements to claimants over the course of the recession?

    Similarly, this project will address questions related to the UC modernization incentives and other provisions under ARRA, to answer questions such as the following: What factors led states to adopt specific modernization features? What factors provided the greatest deterrents to such adoptions? How difficult was it for states to adjust their existing UC laws and procedures? In the end, how much change actually resulted from the modernizations? How did the various modernization initiatives affect the pool of potentially eligible workers?

    To answer these questions, the contractors plan to use UC program data, quarterly wage data, a survey of UC recipients, a survey of UC administrators, site visits, and publicly available data about states UC laws and state-level program characteristics. The contractor will also convene a chosen group of analysts to provide technical assistance. A final report is due in the spring of 2014.

    More information on this project can be found here, or by contacting Jonathan Simonetta in the Chief Evaluator’s Office at 202-693-5085.

  2. Study of Unemployment Insurance Exhaustees

    Recognizing that learning more about Unemployment Insurance exhaustees might be helpful in formulating UI policy in the future, the U.S. Department of Labor, Employment and Training Administration has contracted with Mathematica Policy Research to conduct an in-depth research study of exhaustees and other long-term unemployed workers. This study will concentrate on individuals who exhausted their benefits during calendar years 2010 through 2012 and will be structured around three sets of research questions:

    1. Questions Related to UI Recipients
      • How many recipients exhausted all available UI benefits?
      • What factors were associated with a higher likelihood of exhaustion? Or with a faster return to work after a UI claim?
      • To what extent was the use of reemployment services associated with the exhaustion of benefits and the return to work?
    2. Questions Related to UI Exhaustees
      • How did household income and the incidence of poverty change as benefits were exhausted?
      • What proportions of exhaustees received assistance through the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP), Temporary Assistance for Needy Families (TANF), and Supplemental Security Disability Insurance (SSDI) programs after exhausting benefits?
      • Was the receipt of services associated with better labor market outcomes?
    3. Questions Related to the Long-Term Unemployed
      • How did labor market outcomes differ between UI recipients and nonrecipients with long unemployment durations?
      • Were there differences in the amounts and sources of income between long-term unemployed UI recipients and nonrecipients?
      • How did long-term unemployed UI recipients and nonrecipients compare in the receipt of reemployment services?

    For more information on this project, contact Richard Muller in the Employment and Training Administration at 202-693-3680.

  3. Evaluation of the Army Unemployment Compensation for Ex-Military Members Claimants Initiative

    This study is a collaborative effort between the Employment and Training Administration, Veterans Administration, and the Chief Evaluator’s Office, to evaluate the Army Unemployment Compensation for Ex-military members (UCX) in a sample of states that received recent ETA grants to develop innovative practices for this population. The evaluation will examine the extent to which both individual projects and the overall objectives of the initiative were achieved. It will also document the project activities undertaken for possible replication in other states. The evaluation will answer specific questions related to how veterans receive services through the Army UCX Claimants Initiative, as well as broader questions related to how veterans receive services in American Job Centers, their characteristics, service receipt, and employment outcomes.

  4. Short-Time Compensation Program Employer Survey

    The purpose of this study is to gain a better understanding of the use and response of employers to the Short-Time Compensation (STC) program through a survey of employers together with a baseline analysis of the program. The Department signed a contract with IMPAQ International to complete this work within 36 months.

    STC programs are voluntary programs that enable employers to temporarily cut costs by reducing employees’ weekly hours in lieu of laying off employees. In 2012, the President signed the Middle Class Tax Relief and Job Creation Act of 2012, which contains several provisions concerning STC.Among other things, MCTRJCA provides 100 percent Federal reimbursement of certain STC benefit costs paid by states operating an STC program (consistent with Federal law) for up to 3 years, as well as grants to states for STC program implementation, administration, enrollment, and outreach. The primary objective of this project is to understand employer awareness, perceptions, and use of the STC program. To achieve this objective, IMPAQ will select states that are currently participating in STC and survey employers in those states about their awareness, perceptions, and experience with the STC program.

    For more information on this project, contact Jonathan Simonetta in the Chief Evaluator’s Office at 202-693-5085.

  5. Short-Time Compensation Program Study — Demonstration Project

    In February 2012 the Middle Class Tax Relieve and Job Creation Act of 2012 bill was signed into law. Section 2164 of the MCTRJCA of 2012 "requires the secretary of Labor to (1) award grants to states that enact such (STC) programs; (2) develop model legislative language for use by states in developing, enacting, and implementing such (STC) programs; and (3) report to Congress and the President on their implementation."

    In March 2013 the U.S. Department of Labor entered into a contract with Abt. Associates to undertake a study of the STC program. The primary objective of this project is to undertake a demonstration project in several states which will lead to a better understanding of how the STC can be made into a more effective employment program.

    For more information on this project, contact Erika Liliedahl in the Chief Evaluator’s Office at Liliedahl.Erika@dol.gov.

  6. National Longitudinal Study of Unemployment Insurance Recipients

    Given the importance of the UI program, the U.S. Department of Labor (DOL) wants to understand the extent to which the program reduces recipients’ financial hardships, the ways in which job search and reemployment expectations change during and after benefit collection, and customers’ satisfaction levels with the program. The National Longitudinal Survey of UI Recipients (NLS-UI) will provide DOL with new insights about these issues.

    DOL recently awarded a contract to Mathematica Policy Research to conduct a study that will provide real-time data about the experiences of UI recipients. The study will address research questions in six broad topic areas: (1) adequacy of UI benefits, (2) reemployment expectations, (3) job search, (4) total UI benefit usage, (5) employment outcomes, and (6) customer satisfaction.

    Mathematica will conduct three surveys timed to coincide with the early, middle, and post-UI collection experiences of recipients in two metropolitan statistical areas (MSAs) that are selected from the 100 largest MSAs. The survey will follow a group of UI recipients for approximately nine months to gain real-time insight into the role that UI payments play in their lives. The 25-minute interview will be administered by web and computer-assisted telephone interviewing. Mathematica plans to complete interviews with about 2,800 UI recipients.

    For more information or inquiries, contact the DOL project officer, Stefanie Schmidt, in the Chief Evaluator’s Office at Schmidt.Stefanie.R@dol.gov.

  7. Unemployment Insurance State Financing and Alternative Experience Rating Methods Study

    To assist states in addressing serious issues and reforming their Unemployment Insurance Financing systems, the U.S. Department of Labor awarded a two-year contract to the Urban Institute for the purpose of 1) constructing a comprehensive UI Financing Guide, and 2) developing and simulating alternative methodologies for assigning tax rates in state UI programs. The guide is meant to 1) assist program analysts and policymakers, at both the state and national levels, in their efforts to evaluate a wide range of taxation policy issues, and to 2) report best practices used by states in their tax structures, as well as offer specific recommendations appropriate for construction of an adequate financing structure.

    In addition, the contractor will be tasked with investigating the feasibility and impact of adopting alternative methodologies for the experience rating of UI taxes. This analysis will consist of describing and analyzing the advantages and disadvantages of the current procedures and then offering alternative methodologies for varying the UI tax and then simulating those methodologies using actual UI data.

    For more information or inquiries, contact the DOL project officer, Stefanie Schmidt, in the Chief Evaluator’s Office at Schmidt.Stefanie.R@dol.gov.

  8. Reemployment and Eligibility Assessment (REA) Demonstration Project

    The REA is a program that provides people applying for unemployment insurance with an eligibility assessment, labor market information, and a customized reemployment plan with access to reemployment services. REA is a federal grant program, working in cooperation with State Workforce Agencies in 42 states, designed to help the newly unemployed find jobs more quickly and to detect and prevent Unemployment Insurance overpayments. The overall aim of this random assignment evaluation is to determine the extent to which REA recipients have shorter durations on UI, receive fewer UI benefits, and achieve higher earnings as a result of their participation.

    For more information on this project, contact Jonathan Simonetta in the Chief Evaluator’s Office at 202-693-5085.

  9. National Unemployment Insurance State Reemployment Demonstrations Evaluation Project

    The Middle Class Tax Relief and Job Creation Act of 2012 authorized the Department of Labor (DOL) to enter into agreements with up to 10 states to conduct and evaluate the effects of select State Reemployment Demonstration (SRD) programs. These independent demonstrations provide an opportunity to compare across states the costs and impacts of subsidized reemployment strategies for workers. DOL has contracted with Mathematica to conduct the National Unemployment Insurance SRD evaluation. As the national evaluator, Mathematica will assist states in evaluating their programs and develop cross state findings. If fewer than ten states are approved for SRD’s, DOL has authority to augment the National SRD Evaluation by conducting research on other aspects of the UI program affected by the Middle Class Tax Act.

    For more information on this project, contact Erika Liliedahl in the Chief Evaluator’s Office at Liliedahl.Erika@dol.gov.


Final Reports for Recently Completed Available Research

  1. Evaluation of the Unemployment Insurance Benefits Program: This five year study, which ended in February 2010, provided detailed, empirical information on the effectiveness and impact of receiving Unemployment Insurance benefits. The contractor for this study, IMPAQ International, completed works in five separate areas, including 1) changes in the labor market impacting UI claimants and the program, 2) detailed characteristics of who receives and does not receive UI benefits; 3) macro-economic impacts of the program; and 4) an analysis of the new Reemployment and Eligibility Assessment Initiative (REA). Their completed works can be found here:


  2. Development of a SUTA Dumping Detection System: DOL issued a report to Congress titled Evaluation of State Implementation of Section 303(K), Social Security Act — "SUTA Dumping" Final Report.

  3. Reed Act Distribution Implementation Study: The Center for Employment Security Education and Research (CESER) conducted a process evaluation of the uses of Reed Act distributions by states. The study reviewed states' implementation, policies, institutional outcomes, and individual state outcomes, and policy consequences.

  4. Strengthening the Connection between UI Remote Services and One-Stop Center Services Demonstration Project: A demonstration grant to the State of Wisconsin to test new methods of service delivery to enhance the connection between UI Call Centers and One-Stop services.

  5. Study to Improve Worker Profiling Models: This report discusses several approaches for evaluating the accuracy of worker profiling models, and suggests some best practices in operating and maintaining worker profiling models.

  6. Evaluation of the Reemployment and Eligibility Assessment (REA) Initiative — "How to Construct a Comparison Group." Technical Assistance Paper August 2008 from Impaq International.

  7. Evaluation of the Reemployment and Eligibility Assessment (REA) Initiative and Report to Congress on REA's — 2011: Title I of the Omnibus Appropriations Act, 2009, Public Law 111-8, Division F, State Unemployment Insurance and Employment Service Operations, states:

    "In addition, $40,000,000 from the Employment Security Administration Account of the Unemployment Trust Fund shall be available to conduct in-person reemployment and eligibility assessments and unemployment insurance improper payment reviews: Provided, That not later than June 30, 2010, the Secretary shall submit an interim report to the Congress that includes available information on expenditures, number of individuals assessed, and outcomes from the assessments: Provided further, That not later than June 30, 2011, the Secretary of Labor shall submit to the Congress a final report containing comprehensive information on the estimated savings that result from the assessments of claimants and identification of best practices."

    This report satisfies the requirement for a final report by June 30, 2011.

    Reports:

    1. DOL report to Congress on REAs
    2. REA Study by IMPAQ

  8. Full Report — Impact of the Re-employment and Eligibility Assessment in Nevada: The U.S. Department of Labor asked IMPAQ to extend the study of the Nevada REA program using updated data on UI receipt and wages for REA-eligible claimants who entered the program from July 2009 through December 2009. The objective of the study was to address the following key questions related to the efficacy of the Nevada REA program: 1) Did REA’s reduce UI benefit duration and UI benefit amounts received? 2) Was REA effective in expediting the reemployment of UI claimants? 3) Did REA lead to UI Trust Fund savings and, if so, did these exceed REA program costs?


All research and evaluation reports sponsored by the Employment and Training Administration can be found here: ETA Research Publication Database