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Social Harmony At The Boundaries Of The Welfare State: Immigrants And Social Transfers

  • Epstein, Gil S
  • Hillman, Arye L.

The social contract of the welfare state can be strained by the arrival of immigrants who receive welfare payments financed by citizens' taxes. We show, however, that the presence of unemployed immigrants receiving welfare payments is consistent with social harmony. The social harmony, which is a consequence of a view of unemployment as a labour-market discipline, contrasts with the social conflict predicted by Karl Marx when he proposed his earlier version of the same explanation for unemployment. We demonstrate that a socially harmonious policy is always feasible. Outcomes without social harmony can therefore always be suitably amended.

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Paper provided by C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers in its series CEPR Discussion Papers with number 2414.

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Date of creation: Apr 2000
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Handle: RePEc:cpr:ceprdp:2414
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  1. Konrad, Kai A, 1994. "The Strategic Advantage of Being Poor: Private and Public Provision of Public Goods," Economica, London School of Economics and Political Science, vol. 61(241), pages 79-92, February.
  2. Djajic, Slobodan, 1997. "Illegal Immigration and Resource Allocation," International Economic Review, Department of Economics, University of Pennsylvania and Osaka University Institute of Social and Economic Research Association, vol. 38(1), pages 97-117, February.
  3. Shapiro, Carl & Stiglitz, Joseph E, 1984. "Equilibrium Unemployment as a Worker Discipline Device," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 74(3), pages 433-44, June.
  4. Hans-Werner Sinn, 1994. "A Theory of the Welfare State," NBER Working Papers 4856, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  5. Epstein, Gil S & Hillman, Arye L & Ursprung, Heinrich W, 1999. "The King Never Emigrates," Review of Development Economics, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 3(2), pages 107-21, June.
  6. Lindbeck, Assar & Snower, Dennis J., 1991. "Interactions between the efficiency wage and insider-outsider theories," Economics Letters, Elsevier, vol. 37(2), pages 193-196, October.
  7. Assar Lindbeck & Sten Nyberg & Jšrgen W. Weibull, 1999. "Social Norms And Economic Incentives In The Welfare State," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, MIT Press, vol. 114(1), pages 1-35, February.
  8. Snower, Dennis J., 1994. "What is the Domain of the Welfare State?," CEPR Discussion Papers 1018, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
  9. Hillman, Arye L. & Weiss, Avi, 1999. "A theory of permissible illegal immigration," European Journal of Political Economy, Elsevier, vol. 15(4), pages 585-604, November.
  10. Lindbeck, A., 1993. "The Welfare State and the Employment Problem," Papers 561, Stockholm - International Economic Studies.
  11. Andreoni, James, 1990. "Impure Altruism and Donations to Public Goods: A Theory of Warm-Glow Giving?," Economic Journal, Royal Economic Society, vol. 100(401), pages 464-77, June.
  12. Ethier, Wilfred J, 1986. "Illegal Immigration: The Host-Country Problem," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 76(1), pages 56-71, March.
  13. Snower, Dennis J, 1993. "The Future of the Welfare State," Economic Journal, Royal Economic Society, vol. 103(418), pages 700-717, May.
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