Welfare at a (Social) Distance, 2020-2022



Welfare at a (Social) Distance is a major research project looking at the UK benefits system during the Covid-19 pandemic. It is funded by the Economic and Social Research Council as part of UK Research and Innovation's rapid response to COVID-19. Further information can be found on the Welfare at a (Social) Distance project website.

The benefits system is crucial to supporting people during, and after, the COVID-19 crisis. With a growing number of new claimants, it faces two challenges. Firstly, to ensure people quickly get the money they need. Secondly, to make sure that people are helped to quickly return to work or supported further if unable to work.

This project provided vital information on how these challenges are being met and where the system struggles.

The project includes several components:

1. Three waves of YouGov quantitative surveys of new and existing benefit claimants (wave 1 n=8k, wave 2 and wave 3 with refreshment samples n=6.5-7.5k);
2. A quantitative survey of NON-claimants in July-Aug 2020 (n=2.8k), from a smaller related project funded by the Health Foundation - this includes those who tried and failed to claim, are in need but ineligible, or who may be eligible but decided not to claim.
3. Three waves of YouGov quantitative surveys of the general population about their attitudes to benefits (wave 1 n=1.6k, wave 2 and wave 3 n=3.4k);
4. Two waves of qualitative interviews (via phone/Zoom) with new and existing claimants (74 initial interviews and 60 follow-up interviews). These will be added to the UKDS study as soon as they are ready to release;
5. Qualitative interviews (via phone/Zoom) with organisations that provide support to benefit claimants, in four case study areas - Salford, Leeds, Newham (London), and Thanet (East Kent) (32 interviews). These will be added to the UKDS study as soon as they are ready to release.
Datos disponibles26 may 2023

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