Social Investment and Poverty Reduction: A Comparative Analysis Across Fifteen European Countries

Olaf van Vliet and Chen Wang (2015) Social Investment and Poverty Reduction: A Comparative Analysis across Fifteen European Countries, Journal of Social Policy, Vol. 44, No. 3, pp. 611-638.

31 Pages Posted: 12 Jul 2016

See all articles by Olaf van Vliet

Olaf van Vliet

Leiden University - Leiden Law School; Leiden University - Department of Economics

Chen Wang

Leiden University - Department of Economics; Leiden University

Date Written: July 30, 2015

Abstract

Despite the fact that employment rates have increased in many European countries since the beginning of the 2000s, poverty rates have stagnated and in some countries even increased. In the welfare state literature, it has been argued that these disappointing poverty trends may be partly attributable to the reforming of traditional welfare state programmes into social investment policies, because the latter are less redistributive. To date, there are only a few systematic comparative empirical analyses which focus on the outcomes of social investment policies. This paper contributes to the social investment literature by empirically analysing the distributional effects of shifts from traditional welfare state arrangements to social investment policies in fifteen European countries for the period 1997–2007. Our results suggest that the detrimental effect of social investment policies, described in some specific cases in the literature, cannot be generalised across a larger group of European countries. However, for European countries other than the Nordic countries, the results provide some evidence for a linkage between stagnating or increasing poverty trends and shifts in expenditures to new welfare state programmes.

Keywords: social investment, poverty, income inequality, active labour market policy, welfare state

JEL Classification: H53, H55, I32

Suggested Citation

van Vliet, Olaf and Wang, Chen, Social Investment and Poverty Reduction: A Comparative Analysis Across Fifteen European Countries (July 30, 2015). Olaf van Vliet and Chen Wang (2015) Social Investment and Poverty Reduction: A Comparative Analysis across Fifteen European Countries, Journal of Social Policy, Vol. 44, No. 3, pp. 611-638. . Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=2807813

Olaf Van Vliet (Contact Author)

Leiden University - Leiden Law School ( email )

Steenschuur 25 PO Box 9520
Leiden, 2300 RA
Netherlands

HOME PAGE: http://www.law.leiden.edu/organisation/taxlawandeconomics/economics/staff/vliet.html

Leiden University - Department of Economics ( email )

P.O. Box 9520
2300 RA Leiden, NL-2300RA
Netherlands

HOME PAGE: http://www.law.leiden.edu/organisation/taxlawandeconomics/economics/staff/vliet.html

Chen Wang

Leiden University - Department of Economics ( email )

Steenschuur 25 PO Box 9520
Leiden, 2300 RA
Netherlands
++31715277819 (Phone)

HOME PAGE: http://law.leiden.edu/organisation/taxlawandeconomics/economics/staff/wang.html

Leiden University ( email )

Postbus 9500
Leiden, Zuid Holland 2300 RA
Netherlands

Here is the Coronavirus
related research on SSRN

Paper statistics

Downloads
74
Abstract Views
460
rank
340,965
PlumX Metrics