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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.

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Year: 386 publications
08 November 2013
This presentation was delivered at a housing research conference organised by Shelter Cymru in Cardiff on 8th November, 2013.
10 October 2013
This presentation was given at a Child Povery Action Group seminar on 10 October 2013.
04 October 2013
30 September 2013
The Prime Minister David Cameron has announced how the Government proposes to recognise some marriages and civil partnerships in the income tax system. From April 2015 it plans to make up to £1,000 of the income tax personal allowance transferable between adults who are married or in a civil partnership, so long as the higher-income adult is a basic-rate taxpayer. In this observation we briefly discuss this policy and its effects.
11 September 2013
New IFS research shows that the coalition government's tax and benefit reforms will strengthen peoples' incentives to work on average.
11 September 2013
In this paper, we use micro-simulation techniques to investigate whether financial work incentives will be stronger in 2015-16 than they were in 2010-11 and to separate out the impact of changes to taxes, benefit cuts and the introduction of universal credit from the impact of wider economic changes.
11 September 2013
These slides were presented at an IFS briefing on 11 September 2013: Welfare reform, universal credit and labour supply.
11 September 2013
These slides were presented at an IFS briefing on 11 September 2013: Welfare reform, universal credit and labour supply.
10 September 2013
This presentation was delivered to the Association of Chartered Certified Accountants on 10 September 2013
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Impact on Society
An IFS economist advised a “Citizens Jury” on the welfare system, including basic facts and important issues about its purpose and structure.
Proposals by IFS researchers to simplify the benefit system and strengthen the incentives for low-skilled adults to work have attracted the attention of Iain Duncan Smith, Secretary of State for Work and Pensions.
IFS researchers and the World Bank plan to develop capacity and tools in developing countries for the comprehensive analysis of tax reforms
The Mirrlees Review shows the importance IFS attaches to high quality empirical evidence in the design of tax and benefit system.
IFS researchers develop a model of the Mexican tax system that will be used by the Mexican Government analysts.
The IFS played a key role in the debate about who the tax and benefit changes in recent ‘Emergency Budget’ hit hardest.
The IFS has made valuable contributions to the debate on VAT and its impact on the poor.
The IFS played a key role in informing the public during the 2010 election campaign. Our comments on the parties’ tax plans were quoted by the party leaders in their debates.
In light of Government objectives to increase environmental taxation, we investigate whether the UK tax system is becoming more or less ‘green’.
IFS researchers draw together lessons from behavioural economics for tax and benefit policy in a report aimed at policymakers.