Administrative burden as a mechanism of inequality:
Administrative burdens have the odd combination of being both grindingly familiar to us as individuals, and largely unattended as a matter of policy analysis, design, and practice. They are a widely observed fact of life, but not a widely used conceptual tool to analyze life. One explanation for this failing is the fragmented discourse around them, siloed both across and within academic disciplines and policy areas. The economist and sociologist uncovering burdens in a social welfare program are often not talking to each other. Similarly, the policy analyst thinking about hassles in education does not share their insights with the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP) expert. In large part, this is because they do not conceive as burdens as a single analytical concept but are more apt to think of them as specific to a policy domain or area of study. Rather than a general toolbox for reducing burdens, we are left instead with lots of little toolboxes, bereft of enough instruments to comprehensively address the problem.