Wednesday, 19th February 2020
14:00 - 15:00
Clay Room - Nuffield College
Fairness, Risk and the Welfare State
A growing literature shows that most people are willing to accept income differences that are based on effort and choice, but reject inequalities that are the outcome of luck and circumstances. Welfare states follow different logics in their response to these fairness considerations. Our proposed research provides theoretical arguments and experimental analyses that will help us better understand how the interplay between fairness and the nature of the welfare state influences redistribution preferences and political behaviour. We are interested in three main questions. First, we want to understand whether people differ in their views of which welfare system they deem to be more fair. Second, we want to explore whether people respond to the source of income differences when choosing the welfare system they would prefer to live in. And finally, we are interested in the trade-offs between individuals’ own material well-being and fairness considerations for their insurance system choice.