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Social Harmony at the Boundaries of the Welfare State: Immigrants and Social Transfers

Author

Listed:
  • Epstein, Gil S.

    () (Bar-Ilan University)

  • Hillman, Arye L.

    () (Bar-Ilan University)

Abstract

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 labor-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.

Suggested Citation

  • Epstein, Gil S. & Hillman, Arye L., 2000. "Social Harmony at the Boundaries of the Welfare State: Immigrants and Social Transfers," IZA Discussion Papers 168, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).
  • Handle: RePEc:iza:izadps:dp168
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    References listed on IDEAS

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    1. Assar Lindbeck & Sten Nyberg & Jörgen W. Weibull, 1999. "Social Norms and Economic Incentives in the Welfare State," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, Oxford University Press, vol. 114(1), pages 1-35.
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    6. Epstein, Gil S & Hillman, Arye L & Ursprung, Heinrich W, 1999. "The King Never Emigrates," Review of Development Economics, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 3(2), pages 107-121, June.
    7. Snower, Dennis J, 1993. "The Future of the Welfare State," Economic Journal, Royal Economic Society, vol. 103(418), pages 700-717, May.
    8. Lindbeck, Assar, 1994. "The Welfare State and the Employment Problem," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 84(2), pages 71-75, May.
    9. 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 464-477, June.
    10. Snower, Dennis J., 1994. "What is the Domain of the Welfare State?," CEPR Discussion Papers 1018, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
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    13. Faini,Riccardo C. & de Melo,Jaime & Zimmermann,Klaus (ed.), 1999. "Migration," Cambridge Books, Cambridge University Press, number 9780521662338.
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    15. repec:hhs:iuiwop:476 is not listed on IDEAS
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    Citations

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    Cited by:

    1. Epstein, Gil S. & Weiss, Avi, 2001. "A Theory of Immigration Amnesties," IZA Discussion Papers 302, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).
    2. repec:eme:rleczz:s0147-9121(07)00007-6 is not listed on IDEAS
    3. Jean-Marie Grether & Jaime de Melo & Tobias Müller, 2015. "The Political Economy of International Migration in a Ricardo–Viner Model," World Scientific Book Chapters,in: Developing Countries in the World Economy, chapter 17, pages 411-437 World Scientific Publishing Co. Pte. Ltd..
    4. Andersson, Frederik & Konrad, Kai A., 2001. "Globalization and human capital formation
      [Globalisierung und Humankapitalinvestitionen]
      ," Discussion Papers, Research Unit: Market Processes and Governance FS IV 01-01, Social Science Research Center Berlin (WZB).
    5. Nannestad, Peter, 2009. "Unproductive immigrants: A socially optimal policy for rational egalitarians," European Journal of Political Economy, Elsevier, vol. 25(4), pages 562-566, December.
    6. Ira N. Gang & Myeong-Su Yun, 2007. "Immigration Amnesty and Immigrant's Earnings," Research in Labor Economics,in: Immigration, volume 27, pages 273-309 Emerald Publishing Ltd.

    More about this item

    Keywords

    social harmony; Welfare state; immigrants;

    JEL classification:

    • I38 - Health, Education, and Welfare - - Welfare, Well-Being, and Poverty - - - Government Programs; Provision and Effects of Welfare Programs
    • F22 - International Economics - - International Factor Movements and International Business - - - International Migration
    • P16 - Economic Systems - - Capitalist Systems - - - Political Economy of Capitalism

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