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Changing Welfare States

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  • Hemerijck, Anton

    (Dean, Faculty of the Social Sciences, VU University Amsterdam)

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    Abstract

    Changing Welfare States is is a major new examination of the wave of social reform that has swept across Europe over the past two decades. In a comparative fashion, it analyses reform trajectories and political destinations in an era of rapid socioeconomic restructuring, including the critical impact of the global financial crisis on welfare state futures. The book argues that the overall scope of social reform across the member states of the European Union varies widely. In some cases welfare state change has been accompanied by deep social conflicts, while in other instances unpopular social reforms received broad consent from opposition parties, trade unions and employer organizations. The analysis reveals trajectories of welfare reform in many countries that are more proactive and reconstructive than is often argued in academic research and the media. Alongside retrenchments, there have been deliberate attempts - often given impetus by intensified European (economic) integration - to rebuild social programs and institutions and thereby accommodate welfare policy repertoires to the new economic and social realities of the 21st century. Welfare state change is work in progress, leading to patchwork mixes of old and new policies and institutions, on the lookout, perhaps, for greater coherence. Unsurprisingly, that search process remains incomplete, resulting from the institutionally bounded and contingent adaptation to the challenges of economic globalization, fiscal austerity, family and gender change, adverse demography, and changing political cleavages.

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    Bibliographic Info

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    This book is provided by Oxford University Press in its series OUP Catalogue with number 9780199607600 and published in 2012.

    ISBN: 9780199607600
    Order: http://ukcatalogue.oup.com/product/9780199607600.do
    Handle: RePEc:oxp:obooks:9780199607600

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    Cited by:
    1. Obinger, Herbert & Starke, Peter, 2014. "Welfare state transformation: Convergence and the rise of the supply side model," TranState Working Papers 180, University of Bremen, Collaborative Research Center 597: Transformations of the State.
    2. Bea Cantillon, 2012. "GINI DP 52: Virtuous Cycles or Vicious Circles? The Need for an EU Agenda on Protection, Social Distribution and Investment," GINI Discussion Papers 52, AIAS, Amsterdam Institute for Advanced Labour Studies.
    3. Bea Cantillon & Natascha Van Mechelen, 2013. "Poverty reduction and social security: Cracks in a policy paradigm," Working Papers 1304, Herman Deleeck Centre for Social Policy, University of Antwerp.
    4. Ive Marx & Brian Nolan, 2012. "GINI DP 51: In-Work Poverty," GINI Discussion Papers 51, AIAS, Amsterdam Institute for Advanced Labour Studies.

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