The composition of the SIME/DIME sample was defined partly with reference to the likely population to be included in any national negative income tax program and partly to assure that important questions about the magnitude of the overall work effort response and about possible differential responses by different population groups could be satisfa
The primary data for analysis of behavioral responses to the experiment came from a series of face-to-face interviews administered three times a year, for the duration of the treatment period and at least one year beyond. These took about forty minutes each, were administered in the families' homes by specially trained interviewers, and were ide
Overview of the Final Report of the Seattle-Denver Income Maintenance Experiment. Administration of the Treatments
The cash transfer treatment, as has been noted, was defined by a guarantee and a tax rate. The amount of payment actually received by a family was calculated according to information regarding non-experimental income, assets, and expenses contained in a monthly Income Report Form submitted by the family to the SIME/DIME payments office. This i
Overview of the Final Report of the Seattle-Denver Income Maintenance Experiment. Counseling/Training Subsidy Treatment
There were three variants of the counseling/training subsidy treatments: counseling only, counseling combined with a 50% subsidy for approved education (5) or training courses, and counseling combined with a 100% subsidy for approved education or training. Within a family enrolled in the counseling/training subsidy programs, every family memb
Overview of the Final Report of the Seattle-Denver Income Maintenance Experiment. Cash Transfer (NIT) Treatments
The cash transfer treatment tested in SIME/DIME, as in the previous income maintenance experiments, consisted of a series of negative income tax plans. A negative income tax is simply a cash transfer program in which there is (a) a maximum benefit (called the guarantee) for which a family is eligible if it has no other income and (b) a rate (cal
Overview of the Final Report of the Seattle-Denver Income Maintenance Experiment. The Design and Implementation of SIME/DIME
SIME/DIME was launched in Seattle, Washington, in 1970 and extended in 1972 to a second site in Denver, Colorado. The prime contractors for SIME/DIME were the States of Washington and Colorado, which subcontracted with SIR International for the design, operation, and research evaluation of the experiment. SRI International, in turn, subcontrac
Overview of the Final Report of the Seattle-Denver Income Maintenance Experiment. The Treatment-Control Comparison
We have been discussing random assignment of treatment to subjects in an experimental study. One "treatment" that is frequently tested is no treatment at all, in order words the "control" treatment. Families or individuals enrolled in the control group are not eligible for any special benefit or services, but provide the same information to th
Overview of the Final Report of the Seattle-Denver Income Maintenance Experiment. Size of Sample and Strength of Treatment
Other things equal, the larger the sample size, the greater the ability of an experiment to detect treatment effects and the greater the statistical confidence that can be placed in the findings. Having a larger sample size than all the other income maintenance experiments combined, SIME/DIME produced the results to which one could attach the gr
Overview of the Final Report of the Seattle-Denver Income Maintenance Experiment. The Design of the Experiment
Given a will-defined treatment, an expected effect, and an expected cause-effect mechanism, the next step is to design an experiment that will clarify the cause-effect relationship. Developing such a design is complex. The basic aim, however, is straightforward; to introduce deliberate and systematic variations in the strength of the treatment
Overview of the Final Report of the Seattle-Denver Income Maintenance Experiment. The Propositions to be Tested
In order to test whether something is the cause of something else, it is important not only to define the treatment and the hypothesized effect clearly and unambiguously, but also to be able to spell out the logic of the mechanism connecting the treatment to the hypothesized effect. If the issue of policy interest cannot be given prior shape in
Overview of the Final Report of the Seattle-Denver Income Maintenance Experiment. Social Experimentation
A social experiment is a field test of one or more social programs — or, to use the phraseology of the natural sciences, a test of one or more "treatments." A social experiment is a field test in the sense that families or individuals are actually enrolled in a pilot social program offering some type of special benefit or service. It is "ex
Overview of the Final Report of the Seattle-Denver Income Maintenance Experiment. The Policy Context
In the mid 1960s, a consensus emerged among policy analysts and that there were potential problems with the existing set of transfer programs available to those in need. Programs were believed to be fragmented and characterized by variations in benefit levels and administrative access among different types of families. In particular, the worki
The Seattle-Denver Income Maintenance Experiment (SIME/DIME) was the last in a series of four, large-scale income maintenance experiments undertaken in the late 1960s and early 1970s to measure the disincentive effects of cash transfers on the market work of those eligible for them. The purpose of the summary is to provide an overview of the rat
Moving People from Welfare to Work. Lessons from the National Evaluation of Welfare-to-Work Strategies.. Appendix: NEWWS Program Summaries
Appendix Table. Summary of NEWWS Program Activities, Environments, and Results Program Activities Sample and Site Characteristics Five-Year Net Cost per Program Group Member ($) Year Control Group Impact SOURCES: Hamilton et al., 2001; Michalopoulos and Schwartz, 2001.
Moving People from Welfare to Work. Lessons from the National Evaluation of Welfare-to-Work Strategies.. 8. Conclusion
The Family Support Act of 1988 sent a strong signal to states and localities — a signal that was amplified in the 1996 welfare reform law — that it was important to move people from welfare to work. States responded by developing welfare-to-work programs that were more complex, offered a wider spectrum of services, were implemented on a broa
Moving People from Welfare to Work. Lessons from the National Evaluation of Welfare-to-Work Strategies.. Costs Relative to Benefits: What is the government's financial return on its investment in welfare-to-work programs?
The programs' five-year benefits were also calculated in NEWWS. Benefits included the increases in earnings and decreases in welfare and food stamp payments discussed earlier, as well as dollar valuations of the programs' estimated effects on Medicaid, job fringe benefits, taxes paid, and the costs of administering transfer programs such as food s
Moving People from Welfare to Work. Lessons from the National Evaluation of Welfare-to-Work Strategies.. Costs: What contributes to the cost of welfare-to-work programs?
Different types of five-year costs were estimated for the NEWWS programs. The gross cost per program group member is a comprehensive measure of all the costs associated with providing employment services and related support services to people while they were enrolled in a welfare-to-work program as well as after they left the program and/or the
Moving People from Welfare to Work. Lessons from the National Evaluation of Welfare-to-Work Strategies.. 7. Costs and Benefits
FSA pushed administrators to operate more complex welfare-to-work programs, involve a larger share of the caseload (including the most disadvantaged), and provide more intensive and expanded services -- changes that were likely to increase the costs of the programs relative to those of programs operated in the early to mid-1980s.
Moving People from Welfare to Work. Lessons from the National Evaluation of Welfare-to-Work Strategies.. Mandate Enforcement: What role does enforcing mandates play in program effectiveness?
Participation mandates in welfare-to-work programs are intended to change welfare recipients' perceptions and behavior in several ways. First, they send the message that receipt of welfare is not an unconditional entitlement. Second, owing to the time investment required by program activities, they reduce the perceived value of welfare grants rela
Moving People from Welfare to Work. Lessons from the National Evaluation of Welfare-to-Work Strategies.. Participation Standards: What does it take to engage a substantial proportion of people in welfare-to-work program activities?
Despite the fact that participation in welfare-to-work activities is generally required in exchange for welfare receipt, welfare agencies often have a difficult time engaging a large share of their caseloads in program activities. Reacting in part to low participation rates in welfare-to-work programs, FSA broke new ground in requiring states to e