Welfare reform and labour markets
CRESR has a national reputation for undertaking research on labour markets in specific regional contexts among specific sub groups of the population and on labour market initiatives and welfare reform.
The centre is experienced at undertaking both large and small scale studies tailored to meet clients' needs. We use a range of methods to undertake process evaluations, impact analysis of labour market initiatives on outcomes, and the tracking of trajectories of local labour markets over time to assess the impact of welfare reform.
Key areas of expertise include:
- conducting in-depth qualitative research with stakeholders, service providers and participants of job-activation schemes
- designing, undertaking and analysing large scale surveys of workless individuals, households and benefit claimants
- statistical analysis, benchmarking and spatial analysis of labour market trends, secondary and administrative data, benefits data and labour market outcomes
- small area estimation of labour market accounting techniques and econometric analysis
- profiling of labour markets in specific geographic areas
Project Director: Professor Peter Wells
Project Duration: 2013-2019
Talent Match is a Big Lottery Funding initiative of up to £100 million. It is investing resources in a number of areas in England where youth unemployment is a significant issue. BIG will invest for a period of up to five years to improve the lives of people aged 18-24 who have been out of education, employment or training for 12 months or more. The aims of the evaluation and learning contract are: to track the success of the programme and projects within it; to identify what works well, for whom and in what circumstances; and to share learning and improve practice.
Project Director: Professor Peter Dwyer (University of York) and Professor Del Roy Fletcher (Sheffield Hallam University)
Project Duration: 2013-2017
The use of conditional welfare arrangements that combine elements of sanction and support in order to influence the behaviour of welfare recipients has become an established component of welfare, housing, criminal justice and immigration policies. CRESR at Sheffield Hallam University, in collaboration with Glasgow, Heriot-Watt, Sheffield and York universities, has been awarded an ESRC large grant to conduct a major study on the efficacy and ethicality of conditional welfare policies. This five year project creates a collaborative, international and interdisciplinary focal point for social science research on welfare conditionality by establishing an original and comprehensive evidence base across a range of social policy fields and diverse groups of welfare service users.
Project Director: Sarah Pearson
Project Duration: 2013-2017
Making it Work is part of the 21st Century Life investment area of Investing in Communities, though which Big Lottery Scotland invests in projects that bring improvements to communities and the lives of people most in need. The programme will offer investment of up to £1.25 million each to a partnership in 4 local authority areas: Edinburgh, North Lanarkshire, South Lanarkshire and Fife. Up to £2m investment is available to a partnership in Glasgow. Making it Work aims to join up services to tackle the barriers faced by lone parents returning to work, and to create more sustainable local partnerships to support lone parents in the future. The programme is targeting lone parents experiencing the greatest barriers, including those with disabilities, or caring for someone with disabilities; with a large family (3 or more); living in an area with a depressed labour market; living in chaotic circumstances; with little work experience or who have been out of work for two or more years.
Project Director: Alasdair Rae (University of Sheffield)
Project Duration: 2015-2016
The Department of Town and regional Planning at the University of Sheffield is leading a research project commissioned by the Joseph Rowntree Foundation. The study seeks to develop policy proposals which can help local and national policy-makers overcome the traditional disconnect between deprived neighbourhoods and economic growth. The other research partner is the Centre for Regional Economic and Social Research at Sheffield Hallam University. The main aims of the study are:
- to identify which deprived places and neighbourhoods in the UK are well connected within urban labour markets, and which are not. This will be achieved through the creation of new measures of neighbourhood connectedness for the whole of the UK
- to "ground-truth" the analysis by examining the neighbourhood types identified across the UK's eleven core cities, plus London. This involves policy and stakeholder consultation at the city region level
- to provide research results in a way that resonates with a policy audience. This necessitates consultation with policy makers and key stakeholders throughout the research.
The project team also includes Ruth Hamilton (University of Sheffield).
Project Director: Dr Kesia Reeve
Project Duration: 2014-2015
The aim of the project is to carry out an evaluation of data collection on tenants affected by Direct Payment of Housing Benefit, in preparation of Universal Credit. We will be required to produce a report on these findings, supported by additional activities during the reporting period.
Staff undertaking research include
Aimee Ambrose Nadia Bashir Elaine Batty Professor Christina Beatty Professor Ian Cole Richard Crisp Professor Del Roy Fletcher Dr Will Eadson Professor Steve Fothergill Dr Tony Gore Dr Stephen Green Professor Paul Hickman Ryan Powell Dr Kesia Reeve Elizabeth Sanderson Ian Wilson