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Chapter 17 Welfare Policies. Linda Hantrais. Welfare Policies. Why study European welfare policies? Conceptualising, theorising and measuring welfare Differentiating national social welfare systems Developing European social welfare competence and legitimacy

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welfare policies
Welfare Policies
  • Why study European welfare policies?
  • Conceptualising, theorising and measuring welfare
  • Differentiating national social welfare systems
  • Developing European social welfare competence and legitimacy
  • European integration, globalisation and welfare convergence
why study european welfare policies
Why study European welfare policies?
  • Lens through which to examine European integration
  • Key to understanding economic policy
  • Part of wider relationship between national welfare systems and wider processes of European integration/globalization
conceptualising welfare
Conceptualising Welfare
  • Social welfare refers to collective provision of resources to protect against risk/need and to improve living standards
  • The state is key in delivering these resources
  • Inter-related with economic system
theorising welfare
Theorising Welfare
  • Social democratic perspectives emphasize universality of needs
  • Neo-liberals promote minimal provisions
  • Third way looks for alternatives to state welfare
  • Feminists argue that welfare is gendered to the disadvantage of women
measuring welfare
Measuring Welfare
  • Nationally-specific measurements make cross-national comparisons difficult
  • On average, 25% of GDP in EU15
  • Welfare funded differently in different countries
  • Impact of welfare systems also varies across countries
differentiating national welfare systems
Differentiating national welfare systems
  • Differentiated in terms of decommodification (Esping-Andersen):
    • Social democratic welfare regimes
    • Conservative/corporatist welfare regimes
    • Liberal welfare regimes
  • Southern European and Eastern European member states struggle to fit into this scheme
eu welfare systems
EU welfare systems
  • Original 6 member states – corporatist welfare regimes
  • 1970s and 1990s enlargement has shifted the EU towards social democratic welfare regime
  • However, UK has moved towards liberal regime
  • Southern European welfare states rely heavily on self-provision by family members
  • 2004 CEECs have adopted a hybrid system
developing social welfare competence and legitimacy
Developing social welfare competence and legitimacy
  • EEC social policy originally intended to support common market
  • By 1990s, social policy gaining greater legitimacy, but still as support for economic integration
  • UK vetoed social policy chapter in Maastricht Treaty
  • Governments have moved to a softer approach to social policy, esp. OMC
european integration globalization and welfare convergence
European integration, globalization and welfare convergence
  • Economic integration has not reduced path dependent diversity between states
  • Social integration is becoming more necessary, so preventing ‘race to the bottom’
  • National policies/institutions mediate common pressures, producing divergent outcomes
  • National diversity remains in place
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