Ethnicity and pathways to welfare dependence in a New Zealand birth cohort


  • Dannette Marie
  • David M Fergusson
  • Joseph M Boden



intergenerational welfare dependence, welfare dependence amongst Māori, association between ethnicity and welfare dependence, risk factors associated with welfare dependence


The provision of welfare has long been an issue that has attracted extensive debate.Familiar themes that perennially feature in this debate involve determining who is responsible for providing economic and social security to citizens; in what form and to what extent should provision be made available; what criteria and terms should be employed to determine welfare eligibility; and whether the provision of welfare helps or hinders an individual’s pursuit of purpose and independence (Allen and Scruggs, 2004). Although philosophies of welfare and the practical support provided vary across a range of advanced industrial societies, common to all is the attempt to find a mutually agreeable balance between recognising the responsibilities of the state and providing viable support to citizens (Bane and Elwood, 1994; Herd, 2005). An important issue to emerge, however, is the problem of welfare dependency and its long-term consequences to individuals, their families and, more broadly, to a nation’s social capital.


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