Activating Older Unemployed Individuals: A Case Study of Online Job Search Peer Groups

Sigler, Irina
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Improving re-employment chances for older unemployed individuals is a priority for policymakers around the world. While digital job search interventions have proven beneficial for young and middle-aged individuals, their value to support re-employment at older ages has not been investigated so far. To shed light on the potential of digital interventions to assist older unemployed individuals, we analyze a unique data set from a randomized field study introducing online job search peer groups at the Federal Employment Agency in Germany. Results suggest that online peer groups offer substantial added value compared with traditional job search counseling. Participation in online peer groups significantly increases the number of job applications and job interview invitations. We show that older unemployed individuals are accessible for digital job search assistance and identify online peer groups as a powerful intervention to activate this target group.
Inclusion in Digital Government: Narrowing the Divides, field experiment, older working-age population, online peer group, societal benefits of ict, unemployment
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