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CASE | Research Programmes

Intra-household allocation of resources:

implications for poverty, deprivation and inequality in the European Union

Research Objectives and overview:

Conventional indicators of being at risk of a low standard of living - household income below a given threshold, or household experiencing material deprivation - are imperfect proxies for individuals' achieved standards of living. This is because they rely on the assumption that all members of a household share its resources and hardships equally. But previous studies have shown this is unlikely to reflect what actually happens. Who benefits from the household income is likely to vary systematically by gender, age, and household composition, as well as by country as household composition varies dramatically across European Union countries. Read more here.

For news and updates about the project read more here. We aim to build and extend exisiting links, to reach target groups/countries and promote two-way engagement with this project. Sign up (below) to our project-specific mailing list to recieve news, key findings and publication updates.

Case study:

This example, which is not based on any individual as we are at an early stage, shows how the issues we are exploring might be illustrated in real cases

Maria, aged 22, lives with her parents. She is an unemployed lone parent, with a 2 year old daughter Carmen. Maria puts all of her social assistance benefit to help towards paying the household rent. Read more here


A film about this project will appear here soon. In this film Tania Burchardt talks about her research on Equality, Capability and Human Rights.

Funder and Partners:

The project is funded by a 318,268 grant from ESRC. The project advisory group includes Carlotta Balestra from OECD, Fran Bennett, from the University of Oxford; Michel Debruyne from the Alliance to Fight Poverty; Hans Dubois from EUROFOUND; Maria Iacovou from the University of Cambridge; Jemima Olchawski from the Fawcett Society; Holly Sutherland from the University of Essex; and Peter Matejic from the Department for Work and Pensions.

Interactive Tool:

How do you share income in your family? COMING SOON an interactive tool to explore how you currently do it, and how families in other counties do it differently