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Social Security in Theory and Practice: An Essay

  • Dariusz Stanko

    (Osaka University, Warsaw School of Economics)

Understanding the role and functions of social policy and social security systems is a key point for a discussion on reforms of the retirement systems. In this essay I describe the subject and range of social policy in the modern welfare state. The work has a descriptive character and aims at presenting basic issues between social security, social policy and social insurance. In the first part I provide a discussion on the welfare statefs definition and its structure; then I refer to the notion of social policy and present ideological foundations for social security development. Also, a typology of social policy regimes is presented. The essay also deals with the concept of social security, discusses its definitions, origins and discusses development. I go over the discussion concerning classical assumptions underlying the social security concept and present some recent major challenges that make the review of social security construct necessary. Some terminology and institutional differences between the US and European framework are presented as well. Part three analyses the issue and origins of various risks faced by society. Those social risks are described along with the social risk management issues that are at heart of current approach to social policy. The last part shortly deals with the functions of social security with a focus on social insurance as its main tool.

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Paper provided by EconWPA in its series Public Economics with number 0401007.

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Length: 40 pages
Date of creation: 30 Jan 2004
Date of revision:
Handle: RePEc:wpa:wuwppe:0401007
Note: Type of Document - pdf; prepared on Windows2000; to print on any printer A4; pages: 40. pdf file, 40 pages
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  1. Robert Holzmann & Steen Jorgensen, 2000. "Social risk management : a new conceptual framework for social protection and beyond," Social Protection Discussion Papers 21314, The World Bank.
  2. Holzmann, Robert & Jorgensen, Steen, 1999. "Social protection as social risk management : conceptual underpinnings for the social protection sector strategy paper," Social Protection Discussion Papers 20119, The World Bank.
  3. Nicholas Barr, 1992. "Economic theory and the welfare state : a survey and interpretation," LSE Research Online Documents on Economics 279, London School of Economics and Political Science, LSE Library.
  4. repec:fda:fdaddt:2003-16 is not listed on IDEAS
  5. J. Ignacio Conde & Paola Profeta, 2002. "What social security: Beveridgean or Bismarckian?," Economics Working Papers 633, Department of Economics and Business, Universitat Pompeu Fabra.
  6. Barr, Nicholas, 1992. "Economic Theory and the Welfare State: A Survey and Interpretation," Journal of Economic Literature, American Economic Association, vol. 30(2), pages 741-803, June.
  7. Peter Saunders, 1997. "Developing Policy Planning and Research Capabilities in the Asia Pacific," Discussion Papers 0078, University of New South Wales, Social Policy Research Centre.
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