Date of Publication


Document Type


Degree Name

Doctor of Philosophy (Ph.D.) in Urban Studies


Urban Studies and Planning




Economics, Manpower policy -- Oregon -- Portland -- Evaluation, Occupational training -- Oregon -- Portland -- Evaluation



Physical Description

4, xi, 228 leaves: ill. 28 cm.


Manpower programs for the disadvantaged have been operated in the United States for approximately fifteen years. The programs - introduced under the authority of the Manpower Development and Training Act of 1961, the Economic Opportunity Act of 1964, the 1967 amendments to the Social Security Act, and the Comprehensive Training and Employment Act of 1973 - were all concerned with the employment and earning of certain groups. This body of legislation was intended to intervene in particular sectors of the labor market having a deferentially high unemployment rate, not offset by higher wages and other benefits. The intent was to reduce labor market immobility due to geographical location, lack of skills, and age, sex or color discrimination. The ultimate objective of the manpower programs was to improve the employment and earnings experience of the disadvantaged target population. Little is presently known about the impact of the programs on the earnings and employment of participants after they leave the program. This retrospective study attempts to determine the impact of the Portland Concentrated Employment Program (PCEP) on the post-training incomes of 1985 PCEP participants and a control group of 1150 individuals applying to or enrolled in the peEP between 1968 and 1972. The control group is a group of persons who are statistically equivalent to the participants as far as demographic variables and their application to and eligibility for the PCEP; but, who for some unknown reason, did not enter the program. Follow-up income information was purchased from the U.S. Social Security Administration in coded cells containing five or more individuals. The five digit numeric code classified individuals by participation or nonparticipation in the PCEP, sex, race, age, and education. The Analysis of Variance statistical technique was utilized in analyzing the 1973 mean earnings of the code groups included in the study. The analysis of the data resulted in the following major findings. Of the five independent variables - participation, sex, race, age, and education - there were significant interactions between participation, race, and age; participation and race; and sex and age. The first interaction is a result of Black participants and the White control group earning their highest incomes between the ages of 21-25 years. White participants and the Black control group had generally rising incomes as age increased up to 45 years. All groups 45 years and over earned low incomes relative to other groups in the study. The interaction between participation and race resulted from the Black control group in most cases earning more than all other groups in the study. Black participants earned slightly more than White participants. But, the White participant group appears to have benefitted more from participation in the PCEP, in comparison with the White control group, than did Black participants. Enrollment in the PCEP in most cases did not raise the incomes of participants significantly higher than the incomes of the control group. Sex and age demonstrated a significant interaction which was primarily due to the poor performance of males ages 45 and over. In all other age groups males earned significantly more than females. The groups with a high school degree and under 45 years of age earned significantly more than those without a high school degree. The education group benefiting most from participation in the PCEP included persons with 1-9 years of education. Over seventy percent of the persons included in this study in both the participant and the control groups earned incomes below the official 1973 poverty level. Participation in the PCEP did not raise the mean earnings of groups studied above the poverty level. Considering income alone, approximately thirteen percent of the participants in comparison with their control groups are considered to have benefited significantly from the PCEP. Six percent of the participants may have gained more benefit from continued labor market participation than from enrollment in the PCEP. The findings of this study indicate that the benefits to participants in the PCEP were not as substantial as expected.


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Portland State University. School of Urban Affairs.

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