Browse IFS
Publication types
Tax and benefit system
Tax and benefit system   Since its foundation in the 1960s, the IFS has been studying developments in the UK's tax and social security system. This continues to be a core part of the Institute's work, making a particularly important contribution to public debate around the government's annual set pieces of the Budget and Pre-Budget Report, and the Institute's own Green Budget. Research at the IFS concentrates on describing and analysing changes and proposed changes to the tax and social security system, and in using large cross-sectional household datasets to model the impact of reforms on individuals' incomes and behaviour. Below, we present specific projects that researchers at the IFS have worked on in recent years, although the constant need to maintain the Institute's tax and benefit model means that IFS researchers are familiar with almost all areas of personal tax and social security in the UK.
Research projects
Date started: 01 January 2013
The ESRC/HMRC/HMT Tax Administration Research Centre was launched on 1 January 2013. The Centre has received substantial funding from the ESRC, HMRC, and HMT to undertake research on tax administration to strengthen the theoretical and empirical understanding of tax operations and policies.
Date started: 01 January 2013
This project investigates the redistribution and insurance accomplished by the UK tax and benefit system across the lifecycle.
Date started: 01 October 2012
IFS analysis relating to the Autumn Statement 2012.
Date started: 11 April 2011
The objectives of this project is to study how individuals' labour supply is affected by the structure of the tax and benefit system and to what extent the different work patterns observed in France, the UK and the US (and how these have changed over time) can be explained by the different tax and benefit structures. The project aims at using household data sets and microsimulation models of tax and benefit systems in a comparable manner across these three countries.
Date started: 01 November 2010
The aim of this review is to bring together a high-profile group of international experts and younger researchers to identify the characteristics of a good tax system for any open developed economy in the 21st century, to assess the extent to which the UK tax system conforms to these ideals, and to recommend how it might realistically be reformed in that direction.
Date started: 28 September 2010
Resources and analysis relating to the 2010 Spending Review.
Date started: 17 March 2010
Analysis of the three main parties' proposals in the run-up to the general election 2010 and of Labour's record between 1997 and 2010.
Date started: 01 November 2009
Changes to participation and marginal tax rates, and changes in employment and labour supply will be described, and the changes will be placed in the context of the significant changes to the tax system in the 1980s.
Date started: 01 November 2009
With this short project, we intend to provide a descriptive analysis of the
Date started: 14 April 2009
This project uses the Labour Force Survey, the Family Resources Survey and TAXBEN, the IFS's tax and benefit simulation model to analyse the interaction of the National Minimum Wage (NMW) with the tax and benefit system.
Date started: 01 February 2006
This project designs a framework to evaluate the short- and long-run effects of large policies such as taxes, subsidies or welfare programmes.
Date started: 16 September 2005
Tax Credits
Date started: 01 September 2005
The increasing similarity of Income Tax and National Insurance highlights the potential benefits of amalgamating them: transparency and administrative efficiency.
Date started: 01 August 2004
This project asks who benefits from Child Benefit.
Date started: 01 May 2004
The objective of this project is to evaluate a forthcoming pilot scheme for reforms to incapacity benefit.
Date started: 01 May 2004
This project will investigate whether recent tax credit reforms in the UK are taking us towards a more optimal tax system, and what recent reforms might tell us about the UK Governments desire to redistribute to the poor.
Date started: 01 January 2004
The introduction of independent taxation of married couples' incomes in 1990 left much unfinished business for capital gains tax, inheritance tax and even income tax, especially in relation to settlements.
Date started: 01 September 2003
This work examines in some detail the Departments new pension simulation model looking at the assumptions that underpin the model and considering how it might be improved.
Date started: 01 September 2003
This research, which is performed in cooperation with the IMF, provides an analysis of the Russian income tax reform of 2001. This reform introduced a flat-rate income tax system. We analyse both its effects on labour supply and on tax compliance.
Date started: 01 August 2003
Participation of IFS staff in the ongoing project on International Social Security run by the National Bureau of Economic Research
Date started: 01 September 2002
This work updates earlier research looking at the proposals for the Pension Credit.
Date started: 01 January 2002
Fiscal Facts is a collection of tables and desciptive papers about the tax and benefit system and the public finances. Funded by the ESRC Centre for Public Plicy at IFS, the documentation is available online as a free resource and is updated every year in line with Budgetary changes.
Date started: 01 October 2001
Centre for the Microeconomic Analysis of Public Policy (CPP)
Date started: 20 March 1994
PEUK is a forum for UK-based academic economists and policy makers interested in the broad area of applied theoretical and empirical analysis of public policy to meet and to exchange ideas.