Skip to main content Accessibility help
×
Home

Combating Child Poverty? A Multilevel Assessment of Family Policy Institutions and Child Poverty in 21 Old and New Welfare States

Published online by Cambridge University Press:  26 November 2009


OLOF BÄCKMAN
Affiliation:
Institute for Futures Studies, Box 591, SE-101 31 Stockholm email: olof.backman@framtidsstudier.se
TOMMY FERRARINI
Affiliation:
Swedish Institute for Social Research, Stockholm University, SE-106 91 Stockholm email: tommy.ferrarini@sofi.su.se

Abstract

This study analyses the links between family policy institutions and poverty in households with pre-school children in 21 old and new welfare democracies. New institutional information which enables a separation of different family policy dimensions is combined with micro data from the Luxembourg Income Study. Through statistical multilevel modelling, individual- and country-level data are combined in a simultaneous analysis of their relationships to child poverty risks. The results show that family policy transfers are related to lower child poverty risks at the micro level. However, the mechanisms by which such transfers reduce poverty vary by type of family support. Support to dual-earner families operates by enabling both parents to work and raise market income, while support to more traditional family structures in some instances has a more direct effect on poverty risks. The analysis also renders support to the hypothesis that dual-earner transfers also alleviate poverty most effectively among single-mother households.


Type
Article
Copyright
Copyright © Cambridge University Press 2009

Access options

Get access to the full version of this content by using one of the access options below.

References

Atkinson, A. B., Cantillon, B., Marlier, E. and Nolan, B. (2002), Social Indicators: The EU and Social Inclusion, Oxford: Oxford University Press.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Bäckman, O. (2009), ‘Institutions, structures, and poverty: a comparative study of 16 countries 1980–2000’, European Sociological Review, 25: 251–64.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Bäckman, O. and Nilsson, A. (2007), Childhood Poverty and Labour Market Exclusion: Findings from a Swedish Cohort, Institute for Futures Studies, Working Paper Series 2007:13, Stockholm: Institute for Futures Studies.Google Scholar
Bradbury, B. and Jäntti, M. (2001), ‘Child poverty across the industrialized world: evidence from the Luxembourg Income Study’, in Vleminckx, K. and Smeeding, T. (eds.), Child Wellbeing, Child Poverty and Child Policy in Modern Nations: What Do We Know?, Bristol: The Policy Press.Google Scholar
Bradley, D., Huber, E., Moller, S., Nielsen, F. and Stephens, J. D. (2003), ‘Distribution and redistribution in post-industrial democracies’, World Politics, 55: 193228.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Bradshaw, J. and Finch, N. (2002), A Comparison of Child Benefit Packages in 22 Countries, Department for Work and Pensions Research Report No. 174, Leeds: Corporate Document Services.Google Scholar
Bynner, J. (2000), ‘Risks and outcomes of social exclusion: insights from longitudinal data’, OECD website (http://www.oecd.org/dataoecd/19/35/1855785.pdf).Google Scholar
Daly, M. (2000), ‘A fine balance: women's labor market participation in international comparison’, in Scharpf, F. W. and Schmidt, V. A. (eds.), Welfare and Work in the Open Economy, Oxford: Oxford University Press.Google Scholar
Danziger, S. and Jäntti, M. (2000), ‘Income poverty in advanced countries’, in Atkinson, A. B. and Bourguignon, F. (eds.), Handbook on Income Distribution, Amsterdam: Elsevier.Google Scholar
Duncan, G. J., Brooks-Gunn, J., Yeung, W. J. and Smith, J. R. (1998), ‘How much does childhood poverty affect the life chances of children?’, American Sociological Review, 63: 406–23.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Esping-Andersen, G. (1990), The Three Worlds of Welfare Capitalism, Cambridge: Polity Press.Google Scholar
Esping-Andersen, G. (2002), Why We Need a New Welfare State, Oxford: Oxford University Press.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Eurostat (2008), The Life of Women and Men in Europe – A Statistical Portrait, Luxembourg: Office for Official Publications of the European Communities.Google Scholar
Ferrarini, T. (2003), Parental Leave Institutions in Eighteen Post-war Welfare States, Swedish Institute for Social Research Doctoral Dissertation Series No. 58, Stockholm: Stockholm University.Google Scholar
Ferrarini, T. (2006), Families, States and Labour Markets: Institutions, Causes and Consequences of Family Policy in Post-War Welfare States, Cheltenham: Edward Elgar Publishing.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Ferrarini, T. and Sjöberg, O. (2009), ‘Social policy institutions and health outcomes: transition countries in comparative perspective’, International Journal of Social Welfare, forthcoming.Google Scholar
Fodor, E. (2002), ‘Gender and the experience of poverty in Eastern Europe and Russia after 1989’, Communist and Post-Communist Studies, 35: 369–82.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Forssén, K. (1998), Children, Families and the Welfare State. Studies on the Outcomes of the Finnish Family Policy, LIS Working Paper Series No. 178, Syracuse, NY: Syracuse University.Google Scholar
Fritzell, J. and Ritakallio, V.-M. (2004), Societal Shifts and Changed Patterns of Poverty, LIS Working Paper Series, no. 393, Syracuse, NY: Syracuse University.Google Scholar
Goldstein, H. (2003), Multilevel Statistical Models, 3rd edn, Kendall's Library of Statistics 3. London: Arnold.Google Scholar
Gornick, J. C. and Meyers, M. K. (2003), Families That Work: Policies for Reconciling Parenthood and Employment, New York: Russell Sage Foundation.Google Scholar
Haveman, R. and Wolfe, B. (1995), ‘The determinants of children's attainments: a review of methods and findings’, Journal of Economic Literature, 23: 1829–78.Google Scholar
Hobson, B. and Takahashi, M. (1997), ‘The parent-worker model: lone mothers in Sweden’, in Lewis, J. (ed.), Lone Mothers in European Welfare Regimes: Shifting Policy Logics, London: Jessica Kingsley Publishers.Google Scholar
Immervoll, H., Sutherland, H. and de Vos, K. (2001), ‘Reducing child poverty in the European Union: the role of child benefits’, in Vleminckx, K. and Smeeding, T. (eds.), Child Wellbeing, Child Poverty and Child Policy in Modern Nations: What Do We Know?, Bristol: The Policy Press.Google Scholar
Kangas, O. (1991), ‘The bigger the better? On dimensions of welfare state development: social expenditure versus social rights’, Acta Sociologica, 34: 1, 3344.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Kangas, O. and Palme, J. (2000), ‘Does social policy matter? Poverty cycles in OECD countries’, International Journal of Health Services, 30: 335–52.CrossRefGoogle ScholarPubMed
Korpi, W. (1989), ‘Power, politics and state autonomy in the development of social citizenship: social rights during sickness in eighteen OECD countries since 1930’, American Sociological Review, 54: 3, 309–29.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Korpi, W. (2000), ‘Faces of inequality: gender, class, and patterns of inequalities in different types of welfare states’, Social Politics, 7: 127–91.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Korpi, W., Ferrarini, T. and Englund, S. (2009), ‘Egalitarian gender paradise lost? Re-examining gender inequalities in different types of welfare states’, Paper presented at EQUALSOC, EMPLOY/FAMNET conference in Berlin, 11–12 May 2009.Google Scholar
Kunz, J., Villeneuve, P. and Garfinkel, I. (2001), ‘Child support among selected OECD-countries: a comparative analysis’, in Vleminckx, K. and Smeeding, T. (eds.), Child Wellbeing, Child Poverty and Child Policy in Modern Nations: What Do We Know?, Bristol: The Policy Press.Google Scholar
Misra, J., Budig, M. J. and Moller, S. (2007), ‘Reconciliation policies and the effects of motherhood on employmnent, earnings and poverty’, Journal of Comparative Policy Analysis, 9: 2, 135–55.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Montanari, I. (2000), ‘From family wage to marriage subsidy and child benefits: controversy and consensus in the development of family support’, Journal of European Social Policy, 10: 4, 307–33.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Moller, S., Bradley, D., Huber, E., Nielsen, F. and Stephens, J. D. (2003), ‘Determinants of relative poverty in advanced capitalist democracies’, American Sociological Review, 68: 2251.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Nelson, K. (2007), ‘Universalism versus targeting: the vulnerability of social insurance and means-tested minimum income protection in 18 countries 1990–2002’, International Social Security Review, 60: 3358.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
NOSOSCO (2002), Social Protection in the Nordic Countries 2000: Scope, Expenditure and Financing, Nordic Social-Statistical Committee no. 18:02, Copenhagen: NOSOSCO.Google Scholar
Rabe-Hesketh, S., Skrondal, A. and Pickles, A. (2004), GLLAMM Manual, U.C. Berkeley Division of Biostatistics Working Paper Series, Paper 160, Berkeley: University of California.Google Scholar
Rainwater, L. and Smeeding, T. M. (1995), Doing Poorly: The Real Income of American Children in a Comparative Perspective, LIS Working Paper 127, Syracuse, NY: Syracuse University.Google Scholar
Rainwater, L., Smeeding, T. and Coder, J. (2001), ‘Poverty across states, nations, and continents’, in Vleminckx, K. and Smeeding, T. (eds.), Child Wellbeing, Child Poverty and Child Policy in Modern Nations: What Do We Know?, Bristol: The Policy Press.Google Scholar
Ritakallio, V.-M. (2002), ‘Trends of poverty and income inequality in cross-national comparison’, European Journal of Social Security, 4: 151–77.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Rostgaard, T. (2002), ‘Caring for children and older people in Europe – a comparison of European policies and practice’, Policy Studies, 23: 5168.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Ruggeri Laderchi, C., Saith, R. and Stewart, F. (2003), Does it Matter that We Don't Agree on the Definition of Poverty? A Comparison of Four Approaches, QEH Working Paper Series Number 107, Oxford: Queen Elizabeth House, University of Oxford.Google Scholar
Sainsbury, D. (1996), Gender Equality and Welfare States, Cambridge: Cambridge University Press.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Scruggs, L. and Allan, J. P. (2006), ‘The material consequences of welfare states: benefit generosity and absolute poverty in 16 OECD countries’, Comparative Political Studies, 39: 7, 880904.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Sen, A. (1992), Inequality Re-examined, Oxford: Oxford University Press.Google Scholar
Smeeding, T. (2002), Globalization, Inequality and the Rich Countries of the G-20. Evidence from the Luxembourg Income Study (LIS), LIS Working Paper Series no. 320, Syracuse, NY: Syracuse University.Google Scholar
Solera, C. (1998), Income Transfers and Support for Mothers’ Employment, LIS Working Paper Series No. 192, Syracuse, NY: Syracuse University.Google Scholar
Stenberg, S.-Å. (2000), ‘Inheritance of welfare recipiency? An inter-generational study of social-assistance recipiency in post-war Sweden’, Journal of Marriage and the Family, 62: 228–39.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
UNICEF (2005), Child Poverty in Rich Countries 2005, UNICEF Innocenti Research Center, Report card no. 6, Florence: UNICEF.Google Scholar

Altmetric attention score


Full text views

Full text views reflects PDF downloads, PDFs sent to Google Drive, Dropbox and Kindle and HTML full text views.

Total number of HTML views: 52
Total number of PDF views: 360 *
View data table for this chart

* Views captured on Cambridge Core between September 2016 - 2nd December 2020. This data will be updated every 24 hours.

Hostname: page-component-79f79cbf67-b9sxz Total loading time: 4.641 Render date: 2020-12-02T10:11:40.091Z Query parameters: { "hasAccess": "0", "openAccess": "0", "isLogged": "0", "lang": "en" } Feature Flags last update: Wed Dec 02 2020 10:06:44 GMT+0000 (Coordinated Universal Time) Feature Flags: { "metrics": true, "metricsAbstractViews": false, "peerReview": true, "crossMark": true, "comments": true, "relatedCommentaries": true, "subject": true, "clr": false, "languageSwitch": true }

Send article to Kindle

To send this article to your Kindle, first ensure no-reply@cambridge.org is added to your Approved Personal Document E-mail List under your Personal Document Settings on the Manage Your Content and Devices page of your Amazon account. Then enter the ‘name’ part of your Kindle email address below. Find out more about sending to your Kindle. Find out more about sending to your Kindle.

Note you can select to send to either the @free.kindle.com or @kindle.com variations. ‘@free.kindle.com’ emails are free but can only be sent to your device when it is connected to wi-fi. ‘@kindle.com’ emails can be delivered even when you are not connected to wi-fi, but note that service fees apply.

Find out more about the Kindle Personal Document Service.

Combating Child Poverty? A Multilevel Assessment of Family Policy Institutions and Child Poverty in 21 Old and New Welfare States
Available formats
×

Send article to Dropbox

To send this article to your Dropbox account, please select one or more formats and confirm that you agree to abide by our usage policies. If this is the first time you use this feature, you will be asked to authorise Cambridge Core to connect with your <service> account. Find out more about sending content to Dropbox.

Combating Child Poverty? A Multilevel Assessment of Family Policy Institutions and Child Poverty in 21 Old and New Welfare States
Available formats
×

Send article to Google Drive

To send this article to your Google Drive account, please select one or more formats and confirm that you agree to abide by our usage policies. If this is the first time you use this feature, you will be asked to authorise Cambridge Core to connect with your <service> account. Find out more about sending content to Google Drive.

Combating Child Poverty? A Multilevel Assessment of Family Policy Institutions and Child Poverty in 21 Old and New Welfare States
Available formats
×
×

Reply to: Submit a response


Your details


Conflicting interests

Do you have any conflicting interests? *