The rise of in-work benefits: Policy, politics and evaluation

Joan Abbas*, Ewan Robertson

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingChapter

Abstract / Description of output

In-work benefits (IWBs) are cash transfers or tax instruments used by governments to distribute resources to households undertaking paid work. As a relatively new area of labour market policy, governments typically use IWBs to alleviate in-work poverty and increase work incentives as part of a drive to 'make work pay'. This chapter provides an overview of the emergence and key features of in-work benefits. We start by defining IWBs and outlining their unique characteristics. We then provide an overview of cross-national variation in IWBs, review evaluative and explanatory literature, and suggest further avenues of research.

Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationHandbook of Labour Market Policy in Advanced Democracies
EditorsDaniel Clegg, Niccolo Durazzi
PublisherEdward Elgar Publishing Ltd.
Number of pages15
ISBN (Electronic)9781800880887
ISBN (Print)9781800880870
Publication statusPublished - 17 Oct 2023

Keywords / Materials (for Non-textual outputs)

  • EITC
  • In-work benefits
  • In-work poverty
  • Income support
  • Make work pay
  • Tax credits


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