Regional diversity and child poverty: The case of child benefit in the united kingdom and the need for joined up thinking

Carlo Morelli, Paul Seaman

    Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

    1 Citation (Scopus)

    Abstract

    With a focus upon Child Benefit we examine the potential impact of the introduction of regionally specific rates of Child Benefit on levels of inequality for households withchildren in the United Kingdom. Using data from the most recently available British Household Panel Study (BHPS) we demonstrate that the current system for Child Benefit, with differences in payments based upon family composition, acts as a regressive system of welfare. Moving towards a flat rate payment for all children is more progressive for all regions of the UK and for Wales and Northern Ireland a progressive system of higher payments for second and subsequent children is shown to have a still more progressive outcome. Further, we demonstrate that the Child Benefit system can provide an effective and flexible redistributive mechanism for addressing child poverty in a way that is currently not understood.

    Original languageEnglish
    Pages (from-to)113-123
    Number of pages11
    JournalInternational Journal of Interdisciplinary Social Sciences
    Volume2
    Issue number2
    DOIs
    Publication statusPublished - 2007

    Keywords

    • BHPS
    • Child benefit
    • Child poverty
    • Gini coefficient
    • Household income
    • Welfare

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