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L'expérimentation du revenu de solidarité active entre objectifs scientifiques et politiques


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  • Guillaume Allègre


The RSA field experiment, conducted between 2007 and 2009 in 34 French departments, intended to evaluate the impact of higher financial incentives to work for beneficiaries of social assistance programs (RMI and API) using a test group which had access to an experimental in-work benefit and a control group which did not. We show that the field experimentation of financial incentives to work is subject to numerous methodological difficulties. Particularly, they are confronted with a dilemma in which they much choose between the adequacy of the control group and the prevention of its contamination by the treatment, both of which are necessary conditions for causal inference. We then show that the experimental protocol did not circumvent these difficulties, failure which could also be explained by the conflicting agendas of scientific and policy actors involved in the experiment. JEL Classification: J08, J22, C93.

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Article provided by Presses de Sciences-Po in its journal Revue de l'OFCE.

Volume (Year): n° 113 (2010)
Issue (Month): 2 ()
Pages: 59-90

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Handle: RePEc:cai:reofsp:reof_113_0059

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Keywords: Field experiment; Causal inference; Social assistance; In-work benefits; Financial incentives;

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