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Cross-national variation in the relationship between welfare generosity and single mother employment

Biegert, Thomas ORCID: 0000-0001-5437-2561, Brady, David and Hipp, Lena (2022) Cross-national variation in the relationship between welfare generosity and single mother employment. Annals of the American Academy of Political and Social Science, 702 (1). 37 - 54. ISSN 1552-3349

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Identification Number: 10.1177/00027162221120760

Abstract

Reform of the U.S. welfare system in 1996 spurred claims that cuts to welfare programs effectively incentivized single mothers to find employment. It is difficult to assess the veracity of those claims, however, absent evidence of how the relationship between welfare benefits and single mother employment generalizes across countries. This study combines data from the European Union Labour Force Survey and the U.S. Current Population Survey (1992-2015) into one of the largest samples of single mothers ever, testing the relationships between welfare generosity and single mothers’ employment and work hours. We find no consistent evidence of a negative relationship between welfare generosity and single mother employment outcomes. Rather, we find tremendous cross-national heterogeneity, which does not clearly correspond to well-known institutional variations. Our findings demonstrate the limitations of single country studies and the pervasive, salient interactions between institutional contexts and social policies.

Item Type: Article
Official URL: https://journals.sagepub.com/home/ann
Additional Information: © 2022 The Authors
Divisions: Social Policy
Subjects: H Social Sciences > HQ The family. Marriage. Woman
H Social Sciences > HV Social pathology. Social and public welfare. Criminology
H Social Sciences
Date Deposited: 02 Sep 2022 10:39
Last Modified: 08 Apr 2024 03:18
URI: http://eprints.lse.ac.uk/id/eprint/116424

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