Learning from Leaders

Welfare Reform, Politics and Policy in Five Midwestern States

Edited by Carol S. Weissert

Subjects: Public Policy
Imprint: Distribution Partners
Paperback : 9780914341680, 208 pages, May 2000
Hardcover : 9780914341673, 208 pages, May 2000

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Table of contents


1. Learning from Midwestern Leaders
Carol S. Weissert

2. Welfare Reform Meets the Devolution Revolution in Ohio
Charles F. Adams and Miriam S. Wilson

3. Kansas Carves Out a Middle Ground
Jocelyn M. Johnston and Kara Lindaman

4. Wisconsin's W-2 Program: Welfare as We Might Come to Know It?
Thomas Kaplan

5. Minnesota's Balancing Act: Boosting Work Incentives and Job Readiness While Controlling Costs
Thomas F. Luce, Jr.

6. Michigan's Welfare Reform: Generous But Tough
Carol S. Weissert

7. Concluding Comments: Welfare Reform and Governance
Thomas L. Gais

About the Authors


Discusses welfare reform in Kansas, Michigan, Minnesota, Ohio, and Wisconsin.


Several Midwestern states have been leaders on welfare reform in the 1990s and have led the way for other states in implementing the federal Personal Responsibility and Work Opportunity Reconciliation Act of 1996. This book provides detailed analyses of the political rationales and processes that preceded the federal direction to states to dramatically alter their welfare programs and administrative systems. It discusses implementation choices as well as difficulties and successes in carrying out those choices. The book also analyzes the role of political parties, interest groups, foundations, think tanks, and academics in setting agendas and formulating policy. The book features chapters describing and analyzing welfare reform, both their development and implementation in five states—Kansas, Michigan, Minnesota, Ohio, and Wisconsin.

Carol S. Weissert is Associate Professor of Political Science and Director of the Program in Public Policy and Administration at Michigan State University.