Welfare to work devolution in England: summary

Document type
Summary
Author(s)
Finn, Dan
Publisher
Joseph Rowntree Foundation
Date of publication
1 March 2015
Subject(s)
Employment, Poverty Alleviation Welfare Benefits and Financial Inclusion
Collection
Social welfare
Material type
Reports

Download (225KB )

In the UK, despite some variation in Northern Ireland, Scotland and Wales, government ministers and Whitehall control the main operation of welfare-to-work (WtoW) policy. In contrast to most other developed economies, local government plays only a limited role in Britain. There has been much criticism of these institutional arrangements, the fragmentation of public sector delivery, and the lack of flexibility and devolution in the WtoW system.

However, there appears to be scepticism about local providers’ capacity to design employment services and commission them in ways that avoid high transaction costs and improve employment outcomes. The Department for Work and Pensions (DWP) is particularly concerned that divergent local interests and/or capabilities should not undermine national ‘work first’ policies. This concern has constrained local integration and partnership working. This study examined a range of evidence on devolution of WtoW policies in the UK and in comparator countries: Canada, the USA, the Netherlands and Germany.

Related to Employment

What has been happening to career progression

Briefing on the impact of coronavirus on productivity and pay growth

The time of your life: time use in London and the UK over the past 40 years

Report on time use in London and the UK over the past 40 years

Extending the Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme to short-time workers

Briefing on government support for workers during lockdown

More items related to this subject