Helping unemployed people to obtain work is of critical concern for both public policy and society. ‘Welfare to work’ programmes have a key role to play in addressing this, yet we know little about how the organisations which deliver such programmes interact with employers. This research will address that gap by exploring these ‘inter-organisational relations’ in the UK and Denmark.

The study involves two main phases of data collection in both countries. Phase 1 will comprise quantitative surveys of employers. Stage 2 will involve in-depth local area qualitative case studies of the interactions between employers and welfare to work organisations.

The project aims to:

  • Contribute new data and insights about how the configurations of organisations and contracting modes in the UK and Denmark affect employer engagement.
  • Bring an inter-organisational perspective into policy analysis to theorise the nature, outcomes and effectiveness of the relations between employers and welfare to work organisations.
  • Produce a conceptual tool for studying welfare to work policies by developing a comparative typology of employer engagement.
  • Inform the design and delivery of welfare to work programmes, in order to improve their effectiveness and encourage the best use of public money.


Start date
31 December 2013
End date
30 December 2016
Grant holder
Dr Jo Ingold
Grant amount
Grant reference
Employment Studies
Grant type