Skip to main content

IFS-STICERD Public Economics Seminar

Means-tested Social Assistance and Labor Market Informality

Marco Manacorda (QMUL and CEP)

Wednesday 24 June 2015 16:30 - 17:30

This event will take place online.

Many of our seminars and public events this year will continue as online seminars or as online and in person. Please check our website listings and Twitter feed @STICERD_LSE for updates.

Unless otherwise specified, current restrictions mean in-person seminars are only open to members of the LSE community (those with a valid LSE ID card).

Those unable to join the seminars in-person are welcome to participate via zoom.

About this event

In this paper we study the effect of a generous income-tested anti-poverty program in Uruguay on recipients' labor supply. When labor market informality is widespread, as in many low and middle-income countries, individuals can gain eligibility for social assistance by shifting from formal to informal employment. Using matched restricted-use social security and administrative program micro-data on the universe of applicants plus sample survey data on self reported employment status, and exploiting the discontinuous assignment to the program as a function of a baseline poverty score, we show that the program significantly reduced participation in the formal labor market and that this was largely compensated by a rise in informality. We find no overall effect on participation. We conclude by discussing the welfare implications of social assistance when informality is widespread.

This seminar series is jointly organized by the IFS and STICERD.

IFS-STICERD Public Economics seminars are held on Wednesdays in term time at 16:30-17:30 ONLINE or at 12.30-12.45 IN PERSON at the IFS.

Seminar organisers: Stuart Adam (IFS), Monica Costa Dias (IFS), Xavier Jaravel (LSE), Camille Landais (LSE), Attila Lindner (UCL), Joana Naritomi (LSE), and Johannes Spinnewijn (LSE).

For further information please contact Lubala Chibwe, either by email:

Please use this link to subscribe or unsubscribe to the IFS-STICERD Public Economics seminars mailing list (pubecon).

This event will take place online.