Journal on Policy & Complex Systems Volume 2, Number 1, Spring 2015 - Page 17

Policy and Complex Systems - Volume 2 Number 1 - Spring 2015 An Agent-Based Simulation of the Swiss Labour Market: An Alternative for Policy Moreno BaruffiniA Active Labour Market Policies (ALMPs) are generally analysed in the context of a macroeconomic approach or within a micro-econometric model. A critique of the usual economic analysis of labour markets states, however, that a standard economic approach does not take into account the role of complexity in the labour process. The purpose of this paper is therefore to advance theoretical understanding of the matching process and its dynamics, focusing on an analysis at the regional level. Following an agent-based models (ABMs) approach and concentrating on the interactions between economic agents, we propose a model that describes the dynamic matching between labour supply and demand and how it is affected by specific changes in policy and social parameters. The model is still experimental and the definition of the initial conditions is very preliminary but it already allows to approximate quite a number of stylized features of a regional labour market. The model is programmed into NetLogo, a program specifically designed to implement agent-based modelling. Keywords: labour market policy evaluation, agent-based computational model 1 - Introduction labor market addressed to reach its efficient functioning and to correct imbalances. A simple classification can divide labor policies into two broad categories: L abor policies include measures that, in addition to acting directly on the labor market, may also refer to individuals. They aim at facilitating the matching of supply and demand and at improving the access to employment for the disadvantaged. In this sense, a first definition (Salesi, Piras, & Poggiu, 2004) can describe labor market policies as public interventions in the A (a) passive policies, implemented to alleviate the discomfort created by unemployment (unemployment benefits, early retirement, etc.); (b) active policies, defined to affect the employment opportunities of individuals directly. Institute for Economic Research (IRE), University of Lugano 10.18278/jpcs.2.1.4 15