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Minimum Income Protection and Low-Income Standards: Is Social Assistance Enough for Poverty Alleviation?
Stockholm University, Faculty of Social Sciences, The Swedish Institute for Social Research (SOFI).
2009 (English)Report (Other academic)
Abstract [en]

Minimum income protection and social assistance is the last-resort safety net of the welfare state, targeted to the most vulnerable groups in society. Poverty alleviation is thus one chief objective of such benefits. Whether this objective is fulfilled is continuously discussed and debated. This paper provide new evidence on this issue and offers an analysis of social assistance benefit levels in 16 industrialized welfare democracies over the period 1990-2000. It is shown that the period 1990-1995 was characterized primarily by stagnated benefit levels, while in the latter half of the 1990s benefits declined. In most countries, social assistance fails to provide income above the poverty threshold, something that makes it difficult to view these benefits as effective redistributive instruments.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
2009. , 37 p.
Swedish Institute for Social Research, ISSN 0283-8222 ; 9/2009
National Category
URN: urn:nbn:se:su:diva-32567OAI: diva2:280974
Available from: 2009-12-14 Created: 2009-12-14 Last updated: 2012-02-21Bibliographically approved

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Kenneth Nelson WP 9/2009(310 kB)81 downloads
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