Monday, December 08, 2008

Monitoring poverty and social exclusion: what works and what doesn't work

The 2008 'Monitoring Poverty and Social Exclusion' report is highly recommended, and can be read here.

The New Policy Institute and Joseph Rowntree Foundation have taken fifty six different indicators about poverty and social exclusion and tracked how they have changed, year-by-year. It is, therefore, a good measure of the government's successes and failures.

The authors compare progress over the first five years (1998-2003) and the last five years (2003-8). While this is a useful exercise to see where progress has been sustained, stalled, or been reversed, it is an arbitrary cut off point, as there was no drastic change in anti-poverty policies in 2003.

So to supplement their analysis, it is interesting to look at those indicators which are the responsibility of the Department for Work and Pensions, and to use the cut off point as September 2004. The DWP is, after all, the government department which spends the largest amount of money on trying to reduce poverty.

Between 1998 and 2004, the DWP and its predecessor, the Department for Social Security, were headed by Alastair Darling and Andrew Smith, key allies of Gordon Brown. In September 2004, Andrew Smith resigned and control over the DWP passed to a series of supporters of Tony Blair - Alan Johnson, David Blunkett, John Hutton, (Peter Hain) and now James Purnell. From 2006, its work was supplemented by the Social Exclusion Task Force.

It is therefore possible to compare the two approaches - the "Brownite" approach under Darling and Smith, which was based around higher benefits plus improved state-provided services to help people into work, as opposed to the "Blairite" approach which emphasises a greater role for the private sector in delivering services for targeted "hard to reach" groups, together with emphasis on the need for poor individuals to take greater personal responsibility for getting out of poverty.

Of the 32 indicators which DWP policies were primarily responsible for affecting, under Darling and Smith 17 improved, 11 stayed steady, and 4 got worse. After the "Brownites" lost control of the DWP and the "Blairite" approach was tried instead, 4 improved, 17 stayed steady and 11 got worse.

This is not intended as a eulogy towards Gordon Brown - one reason for the poor performance after 2004 was that his attentions and spending priorities turned away from reducing poverty and on to other causes, culminating in the dreadful decision to scrap the 10p tax rate. But what this does show is the best and the worst of Labour in government.

At its best, real, significant progress has been made through state action to help people - not just improving their economic circumstances, but also in cutting crime, reducing the numbers living in non-decent housing, improving health and educational outcomes. But at its worst, a combination of neglect, political infighting and abandoning effective policies for ideological reasons has stalled or undermined progress. These ideological beliefs - in the superior efficiency of the private sector in delivering services and in the importance of individuals being sanctioned if they don't take more personal responsibility - are unsupported by the evidence.

In these much more difficult times economically, it is absolutely crucial to understand the lessons of the past ten years, what worked and what didn't. It is rather a pity that instead, our government seems to have decided that what is needed is more of what hasn't been working.

2 Comments:

At 9:49 pm , Blogger marksany said...

"The real point is that welfare claimants' have no strong motivation to find a job because they lose more in benefits than they can earn in net wages. Until the Powers That Be grasp this simple fact, all this tinkering achieves nothing."Mark Wadsworth

 
At 4:55 am , Blogger will said...

A片,A片,A片,A片,A片,A片情趣商品,情趣用品,情趣用品,情趣,情趣,情趣用品,情趣商品,情趣用品,情趣,情趣,情趣用品,情趣商品,情趣用品,情趣,情趣,情趣用品,,情趣,情趣用品,情趣用品,情趣用品,情趣用品.情趣,情趣,情趣,情趣,視訊聊天室,情趣,情趣用品,情趣,情趣用品,情趣用品,情趣麻將,台灣彩卷,六合彩開獎號碼,運動彩卷,六合彩,遊戲,線上遊戲,cs online,搓麻將,矽谷麻將,明星三缺一, 橘子町,麻將大悶鍋,台客麻將,公博,game,,中華職棒,麗的線上小遊戲,國士無雙麻將,麻將館,賭博遊戲,威力彩,威力彩開獎號碼,龍龍運動網,史萊姆,史萊姆好玩遊戲,史萊姆第一個家,史萊姆好玩遊戲區,樂透彩開獎號碼,遊戲天堂,天堂,好玩遊戲,遊戲基地,無料遊戲王,好玩遊戲區,麻將遊戲,好玩遊戲區,小遊戲,電玩快打情趣用品,情趣,A片,AIO,AV,AV女優,A漫,免費A片,情色,情色貼圖,色情小說,情色文學,色情,寄情竹園小遊戲,色情遊戲,AIO交友愛情館,色情影片,情趣內衣,情趣睡衣,性感睡衣,情趣商品,微風成人,嘟嘟成人網,成人,18成人,成人影城,成人圖片,成人貼圖,成人圖片區,UT聊天室,聊天室,豆豆聊天室 ,哈啦聊天室,尋夢園聊天室,聊天室尋夢園,080苗栗人聊天室,080聊天室,視訊交友網,視訊借錢,黃金,黃金回收,黃金價格,黃金買賣,當舖,中古車,二手車A片,A片,成人網站,成人影片,色情,情色網,情色,AV,AV女優,成人影城,成人,色情A片,日本AV,免費成人影片,成人影片,SEX,免費A片,A片下載,免費A片下載,做愛,情色A片,色情影片,H漫,A漫,18成人,情色電影,自拍,成人電影a片,色情影片,情色電影,a片,色情,情色網,情色,av,av女優,成人影城,成人,色情a片,日本av,免費成人影片,成人影片,情色a片,sex,免費a片,a片下載,免費a片下載,成人網站,做愛,自拍A片,A片,A片下載,做愛,成人電影,18成人,日本A片,情色小說,情色電影,成人影城,自拍,情色論壇,成人論壇,情色貼圖,情色,免費A片,成人,成人光碟18成人,成人聊天室,成人電影,成人圖片,成人貼圖,成人圖片區,成人影片,成人文章,成人小說,微風成人區,成人交友,成人文學,成人漫畫,成人遊戲,免費成人影片 ,成人論壇,愛情公寓,情色,色情網站,情色A片,色情小說,情色文學

 

Post a Comment

Subscribe to Post Comments [Atom]

Links to this post:

Create a Link

<< Home