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Targeting social assistance

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  • Bruce Bradbury

Abstract

This paper reviews the normative welfare economic literature on income-based targeting and contrasts its assumptions with those underlying current policy discourse. One current policy debate concerns the potential role for Earned Income Tax Credit (EITC) income tests. In general, economic models within the standard (for economists) ‘welfarist’ approach provide little support for such policies. However, much policy discourse is explicitly non-welfarist, placing a negative social value on the leisure or home production of the poor. From this perspective, EITC or workfare-type programmes may be socially optimal. The normative foundations of this policy discourse, however, have yet to be subject to the rigorous analysis that underlies the welfarist approach.

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Bibliographic Info

Article provided by Institute for Fiscal Studies in its journal Fiscal Studies.

Volume (Year): 25 (2004)
Issue (Month): 3 (September)
Pages: 305-324

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Handle: RePEc:ifs:fistud:v:25:y:2004:i:3:p:305-324

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Cited by:
  1. John Creedy & Nicolas Hérault, 2009. "Optimal Marginal Income Tax Reforms: A Microsimulation Analysis," Melbourne Institute Working Paper Series, Melbourne Institute of Applied Economic and Social Research, The University of Melbourne wp2009n23, Melbourne Institute of Applied Economic and Social Research, The University of Melbourne.
  2. Kanbur, Ravi & Pirttila, Jukka & Tuomala, Matti, 2004. "Non-Welfarist Optimal Taxation And Behavioral Public Economics," Working Papers, Cornell University, Department of Applied Economics and Management 127150, Cornell University, Department of Applied Economics and Management.
  3. Bruckmeier, Kerstin & Schnitzlein, Daniel, 2007. "Was wurde aus den Arbeitslosenhilfeempfängern? : eine empirische Analyse des Übergangs und Verbleibs von Arbeitslosenhilfeempfängern nach der Hartz-IV-Reform," IAB Discussion Paper 200724, Institut für Arbeitsmarkt- und Berufsforschung (IAB), Nürnberg [Institute for Employment Research, Nuremberg, Germany].
  4. John Creedy, 2009. "The Personal Income Tax Structure: Theory and Policy," Department of Economics - Working Papers Series, The University of Melbourne 1063, The University of Melbourne.
  5. Lohse, Tim, 2005. "Hartz IV The German Word of the Year 2004 and the Country s Hope to overcome its Problem of Unemployment," Hannover Economic Papers (HEP), Leibniz Universität Hannover, Wirtschaftswissenschaftliche Fakultät dp-311, Leibniz Universität Hannover, Wirtschaftswissenschaftliche Fakultät.

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