Multi-dimensional preferences for labour market reforms: a conjoint experiment

2016-05-24T08:42:17Z (GMT) by Aina Gallego Paul Marx

Labour market policies are multi-dimensional: their design depends on factors such as generosity, coverage, the combination of active and passive elements, and overall cost. Political conflict on one dimension often hides agreement on others, and social groups possibly care about different aspects of policies. However, most empirical studies treat policy preferences as unidimensional. This article utilizes a novel experimental conjoint design to assess how five dimensions affect support for labour market policies in Spain. It also assesses if individuals’ self-interest and ideology affect the importance of each dimension for support for a policy. We find that individuals’ support depends mostly on the generosity of policies for the most destitute and on funding. We also find that ideology shapes which dimensions of policy citizens care most about, but economic self-interest does not. Importantly, our experimental design can be applied to study preferences for different social policies.