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Figure 1. The average unemployment rate in East Iceland and Iceland total 2005-to 2021. Note that in 2020 the indicator was recalculated where Höfn in Hornafirði was removed from older numbers for East Iceland.


Updated: June 8, 2022
Source: Directorate of Labor

Metrics, Targets and Monitoring Protocol

What is measured?

Unemployment rate in East Iceland and nationally. (Project effect: induced).

Monitoring protocol

The Directorate of Labor collects this information.


Unemployment rate in East Iceland less than or equal to national rate.


Not applicable, monitoring only.

Changes of indicator

This indicator was originally number 12.2. It was then named Unemployment and can be found under that number in documents of the project from 2005 and 2006.

The indicator number has been changed twice.

Table 1. Changes to name and number of indicator
Year Nr. Indicator name
2020 3.4.3 Unemployment 
2007 1.13 Unemployment 

In 2020 the indicator was recalculated for East Iceland. Older numbers for unemployment contained Höfn in Hornafjörður which is not a part of East Iceland anymore.

Figure 2. Unemployment in Iceland and East Iceland 1980-2004.

Rationale for Indicator Selection

Long-term unemployment can create various social and economic problems. Therefore, communities try to avoid long periods with high unemployment rates since such conditions are not sustainable. The new jobs created by the projects will change the employment market in East Iceland and could influence unemployment rates in the area. However, it is not obvious the effects since more jobs will not automatically lead to a lower unemployment rate. In the past, a stagnant job market in East Iceland has resulted in people moving away to areas where there were more jobs rather than staying unemployed. Also, a gender imbalance in the types of jobs created by the projects (both direct and indirect jobs) could increase unemployment rates.

From phase I/II report on indicators and baseline from April 2005