Explaining Welfare State Survival: The Role of Economic Freedom and Globalization
Using the economic freedom index and the newly developed KOF-index of globalization, it is shown that the Scandinavian welfare states have experienced faster, bigger and more consistent increases in these areas, compared to the smaller European and the so called liberal welfare states. The market economy and globalization hence do not pose threats to these welfare states, but are instead neglected factors in explaining their survival and good economic performance. Big government decreases the economic freedom index by definition, but the welfare states compensate in other areas, such as legal structure and secure property rights.
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