Welfare state regimes and child poverty in the UK and Hungary

Sarah Jarvis, Gerry Redmond

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

4 Citations (Scopus)


Recent social policy reforms in Hungary have signalled a significant reduction in state support for working mothers, including the introduction of means-tested benefits for families with children. In this article we argue that this represents a move towards a welfare-state regime similar to that found in the UK, which, for families with children, encourages the 'Breadwinner' household where the father is the sole earner and the mother works in the home. Comparative analysis of the incidence of child poverty in the UK and Hungary in 1993, prior to the recent reforms, shows that children in Hungary were less likely to fall into poverty than their UK counterparts. We argue that this was a result of a combination of generous and universal state benefits for families with children, and high rates of labour market participation by mothers. We maintain that the reforms recently implemented in Hungary can be expected to lead to increases in child poverty, the incidence of which is partly determined by the degree of welfare state support for families with children and the extent of female participation in the labour market.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)275-290
Number of pages16
JournalJournal of European Social Policy
Issue number4
Publication statusPublished - 1 Nov 1997
Externally publishedYes


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