Events (BELMOD)

In order to present the (interim) results of the BELMOD project to interested stakeholders, several events are organised in the course of the project.

Steering Committee meetings

A steering committee meeting is organised every year to explain the course of the project and the state of affairs. During these meetings, different stakeholders are represented: academics from different universities, public social security institutions, policy cells, mutual insurance funds, regional public administrations and the partners of the BELMOD project.

Steering Committee meeting 1: 20/05/2019

The first steering committee meeting took place on 20 May 2019. During this meeting, the BELMOD project was explained.

Besides, the University of Antwerp, the Federal Planning Bureau (FPB), the PPS Social Integration (POD MI), the Federal Pension Service (FPD), the National Institute for Sickness and Disability Insurance (RIZIV) and the Directorate-general Persons with Disabilities (DGHAN) of the FPS Social Security presented their activities relevant to the BELMOD project:

Steering Committee meeting 2: 29/10/2020

On 29 October 2020, a second consultation with the steering committee followed during which the state of play of the project was explained. In addition, the two reports on the simplification, harmonisation and automation of means tests were presented and the next phase, in which the stakeholder consultation will be addressed, was discussed.

Furthermore, the KU Leuven, the University of Antwerp and the Federal Planning Bureau each presented an example to illustrate the possibilities of a microsimulation model.

Steering Committee meeting 3: 28/04/2021

The third steering committee meeting took place online on 28 April 2021. During this meeting, the state of affairs was explained and the possible simulations that were provided by the stakeholder consultation and the NIHDI were presented. The participants were given the opportunity to provide additional input. This was followed by a presentation by Digitaal Vlaanderen about their work on an actual income concept. We ended with an overview of the further planning of the BELMOD model.

Stakeholder consultation

The exploratory reports show that there are various possibilities for simplifying, harmonising and automating means testing and the allocation of social rights. The microsimulation tool can then be used to assess the impact of these possibilities on public spending or on the shifting of target groups. However, the tool cannot give an insight into the most desirable solutions. For this, qualitative information is needed. This was collected with the help of a stakeholders' consultation organised by the Steunpunt ter bestrijding van armoede, bestaansonzekerheid en sociale uitsluiting (Support centre for the fight against poverty, insecurity and social exclusion) in cooperation with the FPS Social Security and the Belgian Anti-Poverty Network (BAPN).

During these consultations, the proposed measures were tested with different target groups by means of three sheets. The sheets were developed on the basis of the two reports on means testing. The aim of the stakeholder consultation was to supplement the questions from the sheets with other essential questions on the harmonisation and automation of means testing and to collect arguments for and against the different options. In this way, we want to arrive at a broadly supported list of possible policy measures. Subsequently, these can be simulated in the BELMOD model to estimate their possible effects.

In total, three meetings were organised to gather enough information and arguments to draw up the list of policy measures and simulate them afterwards. At the end of the project, a fourth meeting is planned to show the results.

Presentation BELMOD

On 3 February 2022 we organised an online presentation of BELMOD to present our microsimulation model and some initial results to the wider academic and policy community. By way of introduction, the BELMOD project was briefly framed, followed by an explanation of what a microsimulation model is and how EUROMOD and BELMOD relate to each other. The content of the dataset that we use for simulations with BELMOD was also explained. As first results, we showed the effect of a harmonisation and simplification of the means tests of some social assistance measures by exempting the owner-occupied house and the received maintenance allowances and by considering the paid maintenance allowances as deductible expenditures. The University of Antwerp presented BELMOD research into the impact of an increase in the employment rate to 80% on the poverty targets in Belgium. We ended with the further planning of BELMOD.

The presentations with the introduction, the explanation of BELMOD and the further planning can be found below. The simulation examples will be further refined before they are distributed.

Introduction (.pdf) (French)

Explanation (.pdf) (French)

Planning (.pdf) (French)

Final conference

During the closing conference, the results of both the microsimulation tool and the inventory of policy proposals will be presented to government actors (regional and local decision-makers, political and policy actors and think tanks), stakeholders (NGOs, media, experts, trade unions) and the interested wider public.

Autumn school

Belmod autumn school 10 november