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Welfare Reform on the Web (May 2003): Welfare State - Overseas

CARE AND DISCRETION: WELFARE STATES REVISITED

A. Hetzler

International Journal of Law, Policy and the Family, vol. 17, 2003, p. 68-98

Two major issues confronting welfare states are recognition of family caregivers as welfare providers with a right to remuneration and the reintroduction of administrative discretion as formerly universal programmes become selective. Article looks at the application of administrative discretion to 3617 applications for a care allowance made by parents of disabled children in Sweden.

THE CHANGING INSTITUTIONALIZATION OF SOCIAL SERVICES IN ENGLAND AND WALES, FRANCE AND GERMANY: IS THE WELFARE STATE ON THE RETREAT?

T. Bahle

Journal of European Social Policy, vol. 13, 2003, p. 5-20

Article explores the changing role of the welfare state in social service systems. In England welfare reform has involved the privatisation and marketisation of social services previously delivered by local authorities. Changes in France have involved decentralisation accompanied by a renaissance of non-profit providers. Reforms in Germany have been limited, but two developments have been significant:

  • the introduction of long-term social care insurance in 1994
  • new directions in family policy.

These changes have weakened the dominance of the highly organised non-profit sector.

COMPARING SOCIAL POLICIES: EXPLORING NEW PERSPECTIVES IN BRITAIN AND JAPAN

M. Izuhara (ed.)

Bristol: The Policy Press; 2003

By exploring five specific areas (ageing, domestic violence, housing, homelessness and health) this book provides a comparison of postwar social policy in Britain and Japan. It examines the process of policy development and implementation. It explores current issues and future directions in both countries.

FAITH-BASED ORGANIZATIONS, CHARITABLE CHOICE, AND GOVERNMENT

P. A. Wilson

Administration and Society, vol. 35, 2003, p. 29-51

Discusses the advantages and disadvantages of partnerships between churches and government for the delivery of welfare services in the USA. Argues that involvement with faith-based organisations can link public bodies with excluded minority groups and promote cultural diversity within those agencies. It can also improve the responsiveness and democratic accountability of public services.

GOVERNING WORK AND WELFARE IN A NEW ECONOMY: EUROPEAN AND AMERICAN EXPERIMENTS

J. Zeitlin and D. M. Trubek

Oxford: Oxford University Press, 2003

The European Union and the United States are confronted by common challenges as they reconfigure work and welfare in the new economy and struggle to develop effective and legitimate arrangements. This book demonstrates that despite institutional and political differences, the EU and the US face similar problems created by changes in production organization, employment patterns, household structures and social risks.

POLITICAL PARTIES, INSTITUTIONS AND THE DYNAMICS OF SOCIAL EXPENDITURE IN TIMES OF AUSTERITY

B. Kittel and H. Obinger

Journal of European Public Policy, vol. 10, 2003, p. 20-45

Paper examines whether party politics impacts on social expenditure in hard times. Empirical results derived from pooled time-series cross-sectional analysis and from a cross-section of 21 affluent democracies suggest that social expenditure has been driven, first and foremost, by catch-up (growth to limits) and by rising dependency ratios as reflected in increased unemployment and population ageing. Political variables, in contrast, contribute little to explaining welfare state dynamics over the past twenty years.

PRIVATIZATION AND PRAYER: THE CHALLENGE OF CHARITABLE CHOICE

S. S. Kennedy

American Review of Public Administration; vol. 33, 2003, p. 5-19

Supporters of greater involvement of faith-based organisations in social service provision in the USA argue that these have untapped resources, have encountered unnecessary barriers to participation, and are more effective than government or secular contractors. Opponents note the absence of evidence supporting any of these assertions, and charge that the "Charitable Choice" provisions of the 1996 welfare reform legislation erode the constitutional separation of church and state.

SOCIAL PROTECTION FOR INFORMAL WORKERS IN INDIA: INSECURITIES, INSTRUMENTS AND INSTITUTIONAL MECHANISMS

J. Unni and U. Rani

Development and Change, vol. 34, 2003, p. 127-161

Discusses schemes which have been introduced in India to provide social protection for casual and self-employed workers. Covers housing, education, healthcare and employment.

TAXATION OF SOCIAL INSURANCE AND REDISTRIBUTION: A COMPARATIVE ANALYSIS OF TEN WELFARE STATES

T. Ferrarini and K. Nelson

Journal of European Social Policy, vol. 13, 2003, p. 21-33

Paper evaluates the distributive effects of social insurance after taking taxes into account in 10 welfare states. Some welfare states have extensive taxable social insurance schemes, while others rely on non-taxable means-tested benefits. Paper begins by describing the structure of each country's social policy and income tax systems. Then offers both cross-country and intra-country comparisons of income distributions where social insurance is measured gross and net of tax.

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