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Dutch municipalities and the implementation of social assistance: Making social assistance work

Listed author(s):
  • Marieke Blommesteijn


  • Geerten Kruis
  • Roeland van Geuns
Registered author(s):

    The Work and Social Assistance Act grants a minimum income to anyone with insufficient means to support themselves. Local authorities (municipalities) have been responsible for implementing the Work and Social Assistance Act since 2004, which includes managing the social security budget and implementing activation programmes. However, it appears that the Work and Social Assistance Act has induced only a modest decline, at the national level, in the number of social assistance recipients. This article focuses on the reasons why local governance has not been as successful as expected. Among the reasons identified are the perverse effects of the structure of financial incentives, which led to, among other things, the prioritisation of short-term gains. Recently, however, there have been signs that municipalities are adopting more developmental and longer-term approaches.

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    Article provided by London South Bank University in its journal Local Economy: The Journal of the Local Economy Policy Unit.

    Volume (Year): 27 (2012)
    Issue (Month): 5-6 (August)
    Pages: 620-628

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    Handle: RePEc:sae:loceco:v:27:y:2012:i:5-6:p:620-628
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