initiatives, and changes in administrative structures will figure prominently in the reform initiatives.
The unemployment experiences of smaller OECD-20 countries are different. Austria, Denmark, Ireland, and the Netherlands, four small- to medium-sized economies, can be described as success stories terms of unemployment. Much of the success has been attributed to particular institutional features, macroeconomic policies, and specific labor market interventions. Yet the success these four countries achieved in lowering unemployment has had little impact on aggregate unemployment in the OECD-20 countries.
Finally, the regression results suggest that the share of spending on active measures varies with the unemployment rate, decreasing in years when unemployment increases. For many countries, the mix between active and passive labor market measures changes back to the prerecession mix in the following year. The results also suggest that the share of spending on active measures increased in about two-thirds of the OECD-20 countries and decreased in the other third. For the subset of four countries with longer expenditure series, the regression results are not significant. Overall, the emphasis on active labor market measures in OECD policy discussions is not consistently reflected in actual spending.
Chapter 8 examines a closely related topic: policies to shorten the duration of unemployment. This particular problem is present not only in the OECD-20 countries but also in the CEE-FSU countries to be examined in the next chapter.