Combating In-Work Poverty in Continental Europe: An Investigation Using the Belgian Case
Recent studies find in-work poverty to be a pan-European phenomenon. Yet in-work poverty has come to the fore as a policy issue only recently in most continental European countries. Policies implemented in the United States and the United Kingdom, most notably in-work benefit schemes, are much discussed. This article argues that if it comes to preventing and alleviating poverty among workers, both the policy options and constraints facing Continental European policymakers are fundamentally different from those facing Anglo-Saxon policymakers. Consequently, policies that work in one setting cannot be simply emulated elsewhere. We present micro-simulation derived results for Belgium to illustrate some of these points. Policy options discussed and simulated include: higher minimum wages, reductions in employee social security contributions, tax relief for low-paid workers, and the implementation of a stylised version of the British Working Tax Credit. The latter measure has the strongest impact on in-work poverty but in settings where wages are compressed, as in Belgium, a severe trade-off between coverage and budgetary cost presents itself. The article concludes that looking beyond targeted measures to universal benefits and support for employment of carers may be important components of an overall policy package to tackle in-work poverty.
|Date of creation:||Oct 2011|
|Date of revision:|
|Publication status:||published in: Journal of Social Policy, 2012, 41 (1) 19-41|
|Contact details of provider:|| Postal: |
Phone: +49 228 3894 223
Fax: +49 228 3894 180
Web page: http://www.iza.org
|Order Information:|| Postal: IZA, Margard Ody, P.O. Box 7240, D-53072 Bonn, Germany|
References listed on IDEAS
Please report citation or reference errors to , or , if you are the registered author of the cited work, log in to your RePEc Author Service profile, click on "citations" and make appropriate adjustments.:
- Dolado, Juan J. & Felgueroso, Florentino & Jimeno, Juan F., 2000.
"The Role of the Minimum Wage in the Welfare State: An Appraisal,"
IZA Discussion Papers
152, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).
- Juan J. Dolado & Florentino Felgueroso & Juan F. Jimeno, 2000. "The Role of the Minimum Wage in the Welfare State: An Appraisal," Swiss Journal of Economics and Statistics (SJES), Swiss Society of Economics and Statistics (SSES), vol. 136(III), pages 223-245, September.
- Dolado, Juan J. & Felgueroso, Florentino & Jimeno, Juan F, 2000. "The Role Of The Minimum Wage In The Welfare State: An Appraisal," CEPR Discussion Papers 2452, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
- Juan J. Dolado & Florentino Felgueroso & Juan F. Jimeno, . "The Role of the Minimum Wage in the Welfare State: An Appraisal," Working Papers 2000-12, FEDEA.
- Corak, Miles & Lietz, Christine & Sutherland, Holly, 2005.
"The Impact of Tax and Transfer Systems on Children in the European Union,"
IZA Discussion Papers
1589, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).
- Holly Sutherland & Miles Corak & Christine Lietz & UNICEF Innocenti Research Centre, 2005. "The Impact of Tax and Transfer Systems on Children in the European Union," Innocenti Working Papers inwopa05/30, UNICEF Innocenti Research Centre.
- Corak, Miles & Lietz, Christine & Sutherland, Holly, 2005. "The impact of tax and transfer systems on children in the European Union," EUROMOD Working Papers EM4/05, EUROMOD at the Institute for Social and Economic Research.
- Brewer, Mike & Duncan, Alan & Shephard, Andrew & Suarez, Maria Jose, 2006. "Did working families' tax credit work? The impact of in-work support on labour supply in Great Britain," Labour Economics, Elsevier, vol. 13(6), pages 699-720, December.
When requesting a correction, please mention this item's handle: RePEc:iza:izadps:dp6067. See general information about how to correct material in RePEc.
For technical questions regarding this item, or to correct its authors, title, abstract, bibliographic or download information, contact: (Mark Fallak)
If references are entirely missing, you can add them using this form.