Designing policies to reduce the number of children living in poverty continues to provoke debate about how to provide for all children while also maintaining strong incentives for parents to work. Critical to this is how to improve the availability and affordability of good quality childcare without high costs to the taxpayer.
Longer term approaches to tackling poverty focus on improving life chances for children from disadvantaged backgrounds. Free entitlement to early education and the development of Sure Start Children’s Centres are key elements of the ‘early years’ strategy.
Our work in this area ranges from analysing poverty patterns and the dynamics of parental employment (using large scale surveys) to frontline collection of information on services and costs.
This breadth of knowledge enables us to tackle effectively specific policy questions within the broader context.