Date of Award




Document Type


Degree Name

Doctor of Philosophy (PhD)


Department of Public Administration and Policy

Content Description

1 online resource (x, 170 pages) : PDF file, illustrations (some color), color map

Dissertation/Thesis Chair

Stephen E Weinberg

Committee Members

Bryan R Early, Kathleen L Deloughery


ACS 2005-2009, ACS 2006-2008, Personal Responsibility and Work Opportunity Reconciliation Act (PRWORA), 1996, Regression Discontinuity, Welfare Rules Database, Welfare, TANF, Migration, Participation, Welfare recipients, Migration, Internal, Public welfare

Subject Categories

Economics | Public Policy


The Personal Responsibility and Work Opportunity Reconciliation Act (PRWORA) of 1996 gives states wide latitude to institute eligibility rules for welfare payment, set welfare payment amounts and decide on the income threshold that trigger welfare payments under the Temporary Assistance for Needy Families (TANF) program. Do recipients shop around for the best deal by migrating to a state with higher benefits and liberal eligibility rules in the post-welfare reform era? Does the migration behavior of single mothers support the lifecycle hypothesis? Do states with higher welfare payments and easier eligibility rules have increased participation rates for their migrant population compared to native residents? Do higher income eligibility threshold states attract more welfare-induced migrants compared to lower income eligibility threshold states? Are there any differences in participation rates in high-income states vis-à-vis low-income threshold states? Do welfare recipients compare welfare payment amounts and eligibility rules when deciding to migrate to an alternate state from their current state of residence?