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Citizenship and Social Security


  • Raymond Plant


The aim of this paper is to elucidate the idea of citizenship that lies behind the Labour government’s welfare reforms. There has been no proper statement about this from the government, so the paper is an attempt to make explicit what is latent in the reforms. It does this partly historically by looking at ideas of citizenship that have been presupposed in the development of the British Welfare State. It is claimed that there are two rather different approaches to be discerned: one sees citizenship as a basic status, which in turn is the basis of entitlement; the other view is that citizenship is something that has to be developed or achieved, typically by participation in the labour market and by discharging obligations. This distinction is then used more analytically to assess some of the welfare reforms and to indicate possible sources of future difficulty and tension in so far as the government embraces the obligation-oriented view of citizenship.

Suggested Citation

  • Raymond Plant, 2003. "Citizenship and Social Security," Fiscal Studies, Institute for Fiscal Studies, vol. 24(2), pages 153-166, June.
  • Handle: RePEc:ifs:fistud:v:24:y:2003:i:2:p:153-166

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    Cited by:

    1. Marie-Hélène Bacqué & Carole Biewener, 2013. "Different Manifestations of the Concept of Empowerment: The Politics of Urban Renewal in the United States and the United Kingdom," International Journal of Urban and Regional Research, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 37(6), pages 2198-2213, November.
    2. Armando Barrientos & Sony Pellissery, 2012. "Delivering effective social assistance: does politics matter?," Brooks World Poverty Institute Working Paper Series esid-009-12, BWPI, The University of Manchester.

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    JEL classification:

    • I0 - Health, Education, and Welfare - - General


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