Student Lukas hails DSPI’s support in double award success

Lukas Lehner

DPhil student Lukas Lehner has hailed the ‘incredibly prosperous and inspirational research environment’ at the Department for Social Policy and Intervention (DSPI) after being selected for a research grant and fellowship.

Lukas has received the recognition for his research project on a job guarantee pilot initiative, carried out with Maximilian Kasy, Professor of Economics in the Department of Economics.

Lukas has been awarded a Horowitz Foundation for Social Policy dissertation grant award and the UC Berkeley Fellowship 2022/23 of the Austrian Marshall Plan Foundation.

He is among 25 scholars who have received the Horowitz Foundation for Social Policy Grant in recognition of their work pursuing innovative and urgent policy research addressing contemporary issues in social sciences, also including fellow DPhil student, and Barnett Scholar, Ertuğrul Polat. Read about Ertuğrul’s success at this link.

'Great honour'

Lukas said: ‘Receiving these awards is a great honour and I am grateful for many colleagues who have supported me since I started, in particular my supervisors Professor Bernhard Ebbinghaus and Professor Brian Nolan, as well as Maximilian Kasy.

This recognition, and the associated funds, will allow me to conduct a research visit with Professor Emanuel Saez at University of California, Berkeley.’

His work, Employing the Unemployed of Marienthal: Evaluation of Guaranteed Job Program, looks at work conducted in an area of Hamburg, in Germany. The project offers a guaranteed position to every long term unemployed person. Jobs are unconditional (jobseekers can accept or decline the job offer without strings attached), paid at the collectively bargained minimum wage, and designed to create purposeful work. 

It has been featured widely in UK national press and media and international press and media, as well as by policy makers including the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD) and International Labour Organisation (ILO).

Speaking further about his studies at DSPI, Lukas added: ‘I began my DPhil in 2019 and Faculty and staff have been very supportive to new ideas, which have included collaborative projects including work on the Oxford Supertracker -  a global directory of over several hundred policy trackers and surveys related to COVID-19. I worked very successfully together with Professor Ebbinghaus, Professor Mary Daly, Dr Marek Naczyk and Dr Tim Vlandas.