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STICERD Work in Progress Seminars

The take-up of Finnish Social Assistance: reaching the poor?

Tuuli Ylinen (visiting PhD, Aalto University)

Friday 14 June 2013 13:00 - 14:00

Due to the onging coronavirus outbreak, many of our seminars and public events this year will continue as online seminars. Please check our website listings and Twitter feed @STICERD_LSE for updates.


About this event

In this seminar, I will discuss a research plan to study the take-up of Finnish Social Assistance, an income support program. The focus is on determining which socioeconomic parts of the eligible population the benefit reaches, and if the poorest systematically opt out of the benefits. I will review some behavioural arguments that suggest that poverty itself could affect people’s behaviour, and discuss their meaning for the benefit take-up context. I attempt to extract from the data if eligibles' poverty level predicts Social Assistance take-up. To control for the possibility that innate general ‘ability’ is driving both incomes and take-up behaviour, a measure of cognitive ability is included in the study. To be able to identify the poverty effect I propose an empirical strategy that exploits exogenous variation in the eligible population, using the deep recession Finland experienced in the early 1990s. In the presentation, I will present motivation for the topic of the study and discuss the empirical strategy.