Evaluating What Works for Whom in Employment Services
- Date: Thursday 21 May 2015, 14:00 – 15:00
- Location: Social Sciences Building
- Type: Seminars
- Cost: Free
Julia Salado uses employment services as a case to illustrate the shortcomings of experimental evaluation and propose realist evaluation and realist synthesis as an alternative.
Julia Salado- Rasmussen
Julia is a PhD student at the Department of Political Science at the Faculty of Social Science at Aalborg University in Denmark. She is a member of the two research groups Centre for Labour Market Research (CARMA) and Research Centre for Evaluation (FCE). In 2009 Julia finished her Masters in Public Administration at Roskilde University. From 2009 to 2013 she was working as an evaluation officer at the Danish Evaluation Institute (EVA) where she conducted accreditations and evaluations.
Active employment services are highly debated in Denmark and the rest of Europe. A substantial amount of economic resources are spent in the attempt to assist unemployed citizens to become self-supporting. When actors on the policy level turn towards researchers and the evaluation community to learn what works they often end up disappointed. The messages from the scientific literature and evaluations are neither clear-cut nor easily transferred to political decision-making. Far too often an evaluation or a systematic review ends up with an ambiguous answer, concluding that an intervention works either to some extent or only sometimes.
In my presentation I use employment services as a case to illustrate the shortcomings of experimental evaluation and propose realist evaluation and realist synthesis as an alternative. Such an approach would make it possible to study what works for whom and under which circumstances in employment services. Until now there have only been done a few realist evaluations and no realist syntheses within the field of labour market policies in Denmark. The methodology is illustrated with reference to my current realist evaluation of employment policies directed towards unemployed people receiving social assistance and an ongoing realist synthesis of different evaluations of employment services.