The Dynamics of Welfare Dependency: A Survey.

by David W. Lyon

Purchase Print Copy

 FormatList Price Price
Add to Cart Paperback49 pages $23.00 $18.40 20% Web Discount

A review of published research on the dynamics of welfare dependency prepared for the Welfare Policy Project of The Ford Foundation and The Institute for Policy Sciences and Public Affairs at Duke University. Reviews research in four areas: work incentive effects of guaranteed incomes; caseload forecasting models; the income dynamics of poverty families; and impact of work programs on dependency. Some findings: (1) Lower benefit-loss rates tend to result in more AFDC mothers working rather than an increase in hours worked. (2) The average stay on the rolls is between two and three years. (3) The job market has a measurable effect on the welfare decision. (4) Benefit levels have only a minor influence on migration. (5) Administrative policy causes an important part of the dynamic behavior found in the AFDC caseload, but it does not offset the evidence that welfare dependency is essentially an economic decision. 49 pp. Bibliog.

This report is part of the RAND Corporation Paper series. The paper was a product of the RAND Corporation from 1948 to 2003 that captured speeches, memorials, and derivative research, usually prepared on authors' own time and meant to be the scholarly or scientific contribution of individual authors to their professional fields. Papers were less formal than reports and did not require rigorous peer review.

Our mission to help improve policy and decisionmaking through research and analysis is enabled through our core values of quality and objectivity and our unwavering commitment to the highest level of integrity and ethical behavior. To help ensure our research and analysis are rigorous, objective, and nonpartisan, we subject our research publications to a robust and exacting quality-assurance process; avoid both the appearance and reality of financial and other conflicts of interest through staff training, project screening, and a policy of mandatory disclosure; and pursue transparency in our research engagements through our commitment to the open publication of our research findings and recommendations, disclosure of the source of funding of published research, and policies to ensure intellectual independence. For more information, visit

The RAND Corporation is a nonprofit institution that helps improve policy and decisionmaking through research and analysis. RAND's publications do not necessarily reflect the opinions of its research clients and sponsors.