The Washington Reemployment Bonus Experiment



  • Observed the impact of bonus offers on duration of unemployment, cost of UI compensation, earnings, and job quality

Data Summary

The Washington Reemployment Bonus public use data (1985-89) were compiled to study the optimal size for cash bonuses offered to unemployment insurance recipients to encourage more rapid return to work.

UI claimants were enrolled in the experiment from March 1988 through November 1988 at 21 Job Service Centers in the state of Washington. Eligible participants were randomly assigned to one of six treatment groups or the control group. Treatment groups differed in the amount of the bonus available and the length of time the claimant had to become reemployed. A specified bonus amount based on the claimant's unemployment insurance entitlement was available to the participant if all employment conditions were met.

Administrative data for each individual were obtained from the participant tracking system, with supplementary data provided by the Washington State Employment Security Department. These data provide:

  • Demographic characteristics
  • Unemployment date and benefit information
  • Quarterly wages and hourly wage rate (first quarter 1985 through fourth quarter 1989)
  • Local labor market information (October 1987 through November 1989)
  • Experiment variables
  • Education and training program participation

The file contains 17,554 observations and 236 variables.

Download Contents

  • 1README_FIRST.html - download navigation document
  • Data, file layout, contents, and variable means for the Pub_use and Empsurv datasets
  • Data Summary
  • WREB dataset, including file contents and variable means
  • program to import SAS export/transport file into SAS
  • program to read ASCII file (WREB.dat) into SAS
  • Final Report
  • Executive Summary from the Final Report
  • WREB Data Documentation
  • Installation of Adobe Acrobat Reader

Final Report

Reemployment Incentives for Unemployment Insurance Beneficiaries: Results from the Washington Reemployment Bonus Experiment 1992
Christopher J. O’Leary, Senior Economist
Robert Spiegelman, Senior Economist
Kenneth J. Kline, Senior Research Analyst
Upjohn Institute Working Paper No. 93-22, 1993
Disclaimer: The material that you download is provided as it was downloaded to us. If you have difficulty with the download, contact us at Upjohn Institute staff persons, however, are unable to answer any questions about the substance of the research or the data. If you have questions about the layout, variables, or substance of the research, we suggest that you contact the original study author(s).