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Would Financial Incentives for Leaving Welfare Lead Some People to Stay on Welfare Longer? An Experimental Evaluation of 'Entry Effects' in the SSP

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  • David Card
  • Philip K. Robins
  • Winston Lin

Abstract

The Self-Sufficiency Project (SSP) is a large scale social experiment being conducted in Canada to evaluate the effects of an earnings supplement (or subsidy) for long-term welfare recipients who find a full-time job and leave income assistance. The supplement is available to single parents who have received income assistance for a year or more, and typically doubles the gross take-home pay of recipients. A critical issue in the evaluation of SSP is whether the availability of the supplement would lead some new income assistance recipients to prolong their stay on welfare in order to gain eligibility. A separate experiment was conducted to measure the magnitude of this effect. One half of a group of new applicants was informed that they would be eligible to receive SSP if they stayed on income assistance for a year; the other half was randomly assigned to a control group. Our analysis indicates a very modest exit

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Bibliographic Info

Paper provided by National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc in its series NBER Working Papers with number 6449.

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Date of creation: Mar 1998
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Handle: RePEc:nbr:nberwo:6449

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  1. BRADLEY R. Schiller & C. NIELSEN Brasher, 1993. "Effects Of Workfare Saturation On Afdc Caseloads," Contemporary Economic Policy, Western Economic Association International, vol. 11(2), pages 39-49, 04.
  2. Keeley, Michael C, et al, 1978. "The Estimation of Labor Supply Models Using Experimental Data," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 68(5), pages 873-87, December.
  3. LaLonde, Robert J, 1986. "Evaluating the Econometric Evaluations of Training Programs with Experimental Data," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 76(4), pages 604-20, September.
  4. Moffitt, Robert, 1992. "Incentive Effects of the U.S. Welfare System: A Review," Journal of Economic Literature, American Economic Association, vol. 30(1), pages 1-61, March.
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Cited by:
  1. Robert Moffitt, 2001. "The Temporary Assistance for Needy Families Program," Economics Working Paper Archive 463, The Johns Hopkins University,Department of Economics.
  2. Robert Moffitt, 2002. "The role of randomized field trials in social science research: a perspective from evaluations of reforms of social welfare programs," CeMMAP working papers CWP23/02, Centre for Microdata Methods and Practice, Institute for Fiscal Studies.
  3. Philip K. Robins & Charles Michalopoulos, 2001. "Using financial incentives to encourage welfare recipients to become economically self-sufficient," Economic Policy Review, Federal Reserve Bank of New York, issue Sep, pages 105-123.
  4. Card, David, 2000. "Reforming the Financial Incentives of the Welfare System," IZA Discussion Papers 172, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).

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