The durable experiment: State insurance of workers' compensation risk in the early twentieth century

Price V. Fishback, Shawn Everett Kantor

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

20 Scopus citations

Abstract

In the early 1910s state governments debated the private versus public underwriting of workers' compensation risk. The choices they made established the existing system today and set the stage for later debates over the government's underwriting of unemployment, health, and disability risks. This article offers both quantitative and case-study analyses of states' original choices between public and private insurance. Monopoly state funds were adopted in some states because of an unusual combination of strong unions and weak insurance and agricultural interests. In other states, the emergence of progressive political coalitions played the decisive role.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)809-836
Number of pages28
JournalJournal of Economic History
Volume56
Issue number4
DOIs
StatePublished - Dec 1996

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • History
  • Economics and Econometrics
  • Economics, Econometrics and Finance (miscellaneous)

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