Social Situation ObservatorySince 2005 TÁRKI is a member of a consortium that monitors and reports on trends in income distribution and social inclusion - i.e. on the overall inclusiveness of European society. The Social Situation Observatory monitors regularly the situation regarding income and wealth, the impact of the tax-benefit system, access to services, questions related to poverty, and population groups particularly at risk of exclusion. This involves examining the relationship between income and living standards and the extent to which the former, as usually defined and measured, determines the latter, and, accordingly, how far households and the people living in them are able to participate fully in society and avoid deprivation and exclusion. It also involves consideration of other factors that influence living standards and involvement in society, particularly the tax and benefit system in place in different countries, and other measures implemented by governments to provide social support, as well as access to employment, decent housing and so on.
The Social Situation Observatory was established by the European Commission in 2005.
The Observatory includes three multi-disciplinary networks of independent experts which cover various aspects of the social situation. The network on income distribution and living conditions consists of Applica in Brussels, the European Centre for Social Welfare Policy and Research in Vienna, Tárki in Budapest and ISER at the University of Essex in the UK.
The task of the network is to analyse each year the latest data on income distribution, the risk of poverty and social deprivation across the EU and to examine major issues in this broad area and so contribute to the development of evidence-based policies.
The results of the analysis are published in the annual Monitoring Report , a series of Research Notes , Methodological Papers and Policy Briefs on specific issues of policy relevance as well as in the Social Situation Report.