Within ImPRovE we will develop for the first time cross-nationally comparable reference budgets. In June last year, PSiTIC joined ImPRovE as a voluntary partner for developing reference budgets for Spain, in line with the methodology developed in the ImPRovE project. Now, also the Italian team form the University of Urbino has joined work package 13 as a voluntary partner, such that we will develop within ImPRovE reference budgets for three Southern European countries (Greece, Italy and Spain), one Western European country (Belgium), one nordic country (Finland) and one Eastern European country (Hungary).
Recently, the potential usefulness of cross-nationally comparable reference budgets has drawn the attention of the European Commission, which included in its communication on a Social Investment Package several references to developing and using reference budgets in the European Union. Among other things, reference budgets could be used to contextualise the standard at-risk-of-poverty threshold, to measure poverty and to evaluate the adequacy of minimum income benefits.