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In-work poverty in the UK

In this seminar, Dr Rod Hick from Cardiff University explores movements in and out of working poverty and its relationship with subjective well-being.

  • 26 Mar 2019, 1.15pm to 26 Mar 2019, 2.15pm GMT
  • 6 East, 2.2, University of Bath
  • This event is free
man driving a van taken from inside the cab
Unemployment rates may have fallen to their lowest level in four decades but in-work poverty remains a concern

Unemployment in the UK has fallen to the lowest level in four decades but there are serious concerns about the quality of jobs that have been created in recent years. In the UK, as in other countries in the Global North, there has been significant public concern about the problem of in-work poverty, though public debate lacks clarity about what, exactly, in-work poverty is and how it should be tackled.

This talk will draw on two pieces of research about in-work poverty in the UK. In the first part of the talk, Dr Rod Hick will present findings from joint work with Dr Alba Lanau which was conducted as part of a Nuffield Foundation-funded study of in-work poverty in the UK. Rod will discuss the nature of, and will outline trends in, in-work poverty, and will present data demonstrating how people move in and out of working poverty.

In the second part of the seminar, Rod will present initial findings from a new analysis of the relationship between in-work poverty, precarious forms of work and (subjective) wellbeing, drawing on data from the Understanding Society survey. A key question for this research is how those affected by in-work poverty and precarious work experience this, and what questions this might raise for public policy.

Speaker profiles

Dr Rod Hick is a Senior Lecturer in Social Policy at Cardiff University. His research interests are the conceptualisation and measurement of poverty, the analysis of social security and anti-poverty initiatives, and the capability approach.

He is currently working with Prof Gail Pacheco and Dr Alex Plum (Auckland University of Technology) on a project examining in-work poverty in New Zealand, funded by the NZ Human Rights Commission, and, with Policy and Practice, on a Welsh Government-funded study of the impact that Universal Credit has on Council Tax Reduction Schemes and on rent arrears.


6 East, 2.2 University of Bath Claverton Down Bath BA2 7AY United Kingdom


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