Welfare-use Accumulation and Chronic Dependency in Israel: The Role of Structural Factors

Netta Achdut, Haya Stier

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

7 Scopus citations


Contemporary welfare policies in many Western countries limit public assistance for the long-term unemployed and spur rapid movement into the labour market. These policies have substantially changed the trade-offs of employment and welfare-use behaviour, making employment far more attractive than welfare dependency. Despite this new reality, many welfare recipients circulate in and out of the welfare system and the low-wage labour market or become disconnected from both work and welfare. Drawing on longitudinal administrative data of single Israeli mothers who received Income Support Benefit in 2003, this study focuses on the role of structural factors, including local labour market conditions and local availability of subsidised child-care, in explaining the intensity of welfare receipt over a 51-month period. The results indicate notable diversity in welfare-use accumulation. Some mothers were classified as short- to mid-termer recipients while others showed a much more intensive use, and about a third were classified as chronically dependent. Local labour market conditions and their change over time played an important part in explaining welfare accumulation, while local child-care availability had no effect. Implications for policy are discussed.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)81-101
Number of pages21
JournalJournal of Social Policy
Issue number1
StatePublished - 1 Jan 2020

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Social Sciences (miscellaneous)
  • Public Administration
  • Management, Monitoring, Policy and Law


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