Latest posts

Welfare reform

The Human Cost of Welfare

What beneficiaries actually wanted to do was to regain control over their lives and enjoy the fruits of their achievements – just like everyone else. The tragedy of the US welfare system is that it often prevents just that. [...]

Coming apart

For a society of free individuals to work, or to at least avoid social conflict, there needs to be some common ethical ground. This is being eroded by the welfare state for the underclass. Meanwhile, at least parts of the upper class have apparently decided they can get further without sticking to traditional rules of behaviour. [...]

When Hassle Means Help

With the number of people out of work and living off benefits staying stubbornly above 4 million, policy makers are increasingly looking at new ideas to get people off welfare and into work. Especially because, since 1997, over £75 billion of Government funds has been ploughed into creating welfare to work programmes. When Hassle Means Help, with contributions from international welfare experts, examines why conditionality works well in other countries, such as the US, Sweden and Germany – why it isn’t working in the UK - and how governments can most effectively get people back into work. [...]

Time for a new taskmaster

While there is now widespread and cross-party support for contracting out employment services to private companies and charities, little is known about international experiences with such policies. In other countries, after all, similar schemes had been in operation for years, so you might think that they hold valuable lessons for UK policymakers. [...]

Paying for Success – How to make contracting out work in employment services

Policy Exchange commissioned research about five countries that have reformed the way in which they provide employment services to jobseekers: Australia, the United States (Wisconsin), Germany, Denmark and the Netherlands. These countries are most frequently mentioned in welfare reform debates. Their experiences are assessed with regard to the lessons they hold for the UK by former Secretary of State for Social Security, Peter Lilley MP. [...]