Getting Welfare to Work

Public Employment Services and

Welfare Reform at the Frontline

The survey tool that is being used in the GAII project has been widely applied to study the frontline delivery of welfare-to-work in other countries. It was developed Professor Mark Considine in the 1990s, and has been used by he and his colleagues to track the impact of policy reforms on frontline service delivery in Australia and several other countries for over 20 years. This programme of research on Getting Welfare to Work is now the world’s longest-running comparative study of welfare and employment services reform.

Enterprising States (1998)

The survey instrument was first developed by Mark Considine in the 1990s, and used for his landmark Enterprising States project.


Activating states (2008)

Ten years later, with Jenny M. Lewis and Siobhan O’Sullivan, Mark returned to study how the frontline delivery of employment services had changed following ten years of marketization reforms in Australia, the UK, and the Netherlands. The Activating States project was supported by an Australian Research Council Linkage grant, in partnership with Jobs Australia and the National Employment Services Association.


Increasing Innovation and Flexibility (2012)

In 2012, a third iteration of the survey research was conducted in Australia and the UK as part of a wider project examing how service delivery innovation can be achieved without excessive gaming and opportunism by private agencies, or the loss of their distinctive missions. Phuc Nguyen also joined the research team on this project while Westgate Community Initiatives Group (WCIG) came on board as a new research parnter.


From Entitlement to Experiment (2016)

In 2016, a fourth iteration of the survey research was conducted in Australia and the UK, with Michael McGann joining the research team.


The Getting Welfare to Work Research Team
Professor Mark Considine
Provost and Professor of Political Science
University of Melbourne
Professor Jenny M. Lewis
Professor of Public Policy, School of Social and Political Sciences
University of Melbourne
Dr Siobhan O’Sullivan
Senior Lecturer in Social Policy and Research
University of New South Wales
Dr Phuc Ngugen
Lecturer in Management
La Trobe University
Dr Michael McGann
Marie Sklodowska-Curie Research Fellow
Maynooth University Social Sciences Institute


This project has received funding from the European Union’s Horizon 2020 Research and Innovation programme under the Marie-Sklodowska-Curie grant agreement no. 841477.

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