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The Effects of Work-Conditioned Transfers on Marriage and Child Well-Being: A Review

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  • Jeffrey Grogger
  • Lynn Karoly

Abstract

Transfer payments to poor families are increasingly conditioned on work, either via wage subsidies available only to workers or via work requirements in more traditional welfare programs. Although the effects of such programs on employment are fairly well understood, relatively little is known about their effects on marriage or child well-being. We review a small number of studies that provide such information here. Our discussion of marriage is couched in terms of a theoretical model that draws from the efficient-household literature. The model is consistent with the wide range of effects that we observe and suggests an explanation for some of the observed differences. The theoretical framework in which we couch our review of results on children is likewise consistent with the observed variation between programs and among children of different ages.

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Bibliographic Info

Paper provided by National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc in its series NBER Working Papers with number 13485.

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Date of creation: Oct 2007
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Publication status: published as Jeffrey Grogger & LynnA. Karoly, 2009. "The Effects of Work-Conditioned Transfers on Marriage and Child Well-Being: A Review," Economic Journal, Royal Economic Society, vol. 119(535), pages F15-F37, 02.
Handle: RePEc:nbr:nberwo:13485

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  1. Chiappori, P.A., 1989. "Collective Labour Supply and Welfare," DELTA Working Papers 89-07, DELTA (Ecole normale supérieure).
  2. Francesconi, Marco & Rainer, Helmut & van der Klaauw, Wilbert, 2007. "The Effects of In-Work Benefit Reform in Britain on Couples: Theory and Evidence," IZA Discussion Papers 2980, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).
  3. Moffitt, Robert, 1990. "The effect of the U.S. welfare system on marital status," Journal of Public Economics, Elsevier, vol. 41(1), pages 101-124, February.
  4. Hilary Hoynes, 1993. "Welfare Transfers in Two-Parent Families: Labor Supply and Welfare Participation Under AFDC-UP," NBER Working Papers 4407, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  5. Marianne Bitler & Jonah Gelbach & Hilary Hoynes & Madeline Zavodny, 2004. "The impact of welfare reform on marriage and divorce," Demography, Springer, vol. 41(2), pages 213-236, May.
  6. V. Joseph Hotz, 2003. "The Earned Income Tax Credit," NBER Chapters, in: Means-Tested Transfer Programs in the United States, pages 141-198 National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  7. Gary S. Becker & Nigel Tomes, 1976. "Child Endowments, and the Quantity and Quality of Children," NBER Working Papers 0123, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  8. Williamson Hoyne, Hilary, 1997. "Does welfare play any role in female headship decisions?," Journal of Public Economics, Elsevier, vol. 65(2), pages 89-117, August.
  9. Schultz, T.P., 1993. "Marital Status and Fertility in the United States: Welfare and Labor Market Effects," Papers 703, Yale - Economic Growth Center.
  10. Kristen Harknett & Lisa Gennetian, 2003. "How an earnings supplement can affect union formation among low-income single mothers," Demography, Springer, vol. 40(3), pages 451-478, August.
  11. Elizabeth Clark-Kauffman & Greg J. Duncan & Pamela Morris, 2003. "How Welfare Policies Affect Child and Adolescent Achievement," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 93(2), pages 299-303, May.
  12. Robert A. Moffitt, 2003. "Means-Tested Transfer Programs in the United States," NBER Books, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc, number moff03-1.
  13. Marco Francesconi & Wilbert van der Klaauw, 2007. "The Socioeconomic Consequences of "In-Work" Benefit Reform for British Lone Mothers," Journal of Human Resources, University of Wisconsin Press, vol. 42(1).
  14. Robert A. Moffitt, 2003. "Introduction to "Means-Tested Transfer Programs in the United States"," NBER Chapters, in: Means-Tested Transfer Programs in the United States, pages 1-14 National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  15. Gary S. Becker, 1981. "A Treatise on the Family," NBER Books, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc, number beck81-1.
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Cited by:
  1. Francesconi, Marco & Rainer, Helmut & Klaauw,, 2009. "The effects of in-work benefit reform in Britain on couples: Theory and evidence," Munich Reprints in Economics 20334, University of Munich, Department of Economics.
  2. Francesconi, Marco & Rainer, Helmut & Van Der Klaauw, Wilbert, 2008. "Unintended Consequences of Welfare Reform: The Case of Divorced Parents," CEPR Discussion Papers 7107, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
  3. Francesconi, Marco & Rainer, Helmut & Klaauw,, 2013. "Unintended consequences of welfare reform for children with single parents: a theoretical analysis," Munich Reprints in Economics 20333, University of Munich, Department of Economics.

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