Web links for 9th February 2012
Ben Baumberg has written the best brief summary of what can be learnt from the Employment Retention and Advancement Demonstration Project, which tried to help lone parents and long-term unemployed people who got jobs to keep them and to move on to better pay with training, advice, guidance and cash bonuses.
For lone parents, there was little short-and no long-term impact.
For long-term unemployed people, the project was very good at getting people into work, which increased their incomes and reduced costs to the government, but it seems that ERA did very little to increase the earnings of people in-work.
This is a major cause of poverty and social exclusion. What is more, because we still haven't succeeded in designing policies that can be shown to work it remains an important area where we don't have an evidence-based policy agenda.