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

GLOBALIZATION, EUROPEANIZATION AND DOMESTIC WELFARE STATE REFORMS: NEW INSTITUTIONALIST CONCEPTS

M. Beyeler

Global Social Policy, vol. 3, 2003, p.152-172

Discusses the links between Europeanisation and economic globalisation and changes in social protection systems from an institutionalist perspective.

POLICY PERSPECTIVES ON CHANGING INTERGENERATIONAL RELATIONS

I. Jonsson

Social Policy and Society, vol. 2, 2003, p.241-248

Explores the varying roles played by the state, the market, the family and civil society in caring for children and the elderly across Europe.

EAST VERSUS WEST: COMPARING POLITICAL ATTITUDES AND WELFARE PREFERENCES ACROSS EUROPEAN SOCIETIES

C.S. Lipsmeyer and T. Nordstrom

Journal of European Public Policy, vol. 10, 2003, p.339-364

Study showed that voters in Western Europe who are higher up the income scale are less likely to support increased welfare spending. However in Eastern Europe the economic hardship of the transition has led to an unemployment problem that has influenced welfare preferences in favour of more spending. In Western Europe, right-leaning voters favoured less welfare spending while left wing voters wanted more. In Eastern Europe, voters for right wing governments were significantly more likely to want less welfare spending than those who did not vote for them. However, the measure for voters for the left was negative and non-significant. Speculates that votes for the left may be legacy votes and therefore not determined by issue and policy stances.

NEW ECONOMY AND NEW SOCIAL POLICY IN EAST AND SOUTHEAST ASIAN COMPACT, MATURE ECONOMIES: THE CASE OF HONG KONG

N. W.-S. Chow

Social Policy and Administration, vol. 37, 2003, p.411-422

Over the past 30 years, Hong Kong has developed universal, rather than targeted, education, housing, medical and social welfare services, largely in response to growing prosperity and the rising expectations of the people. This trend has been reversed since the economic downturn of 1997, which led to rising unemployment and surging fiscal deficits. A selective approach to social welfare has been adopted, with resources targeted on the most needy.

RETHINKING CORPORATION AND CONSENSUS:

THE DILEMMAS OF GERMAN SOCIAL-PROTECTION REFORM

M. I. Vail

West European Politics, vol.26, July 2003, p.41-66

Article argues that recent German governments, particularly the administration of Gerhard Schröder, have responded to problems of structural unemployment and poor economic growth by departing from earlier patterns of incremental policy change, inter-party consensus and limited state intervention in social and labour market policy. Since 1998 the Schroder government has taken over significant labour market policy responsibilities from trade unions and employers' associations. In social policy, it has also adopted a confrontational posture towards political opposition and the social partners and has enacted far-reaching reforms, particularly a restructuring of the pension system opposed by the Christian Democrats and the trade unions.

SOCIAL POLICY IN SOUTH KOREA: CULTURAL AND STRUCTURAL FACTORS IN THE EMERGENCE OF WELFARE

C.-S. Shin and I. Shaw

Social Policy and Administration, vol. 37, 2003, p.328-341

Since the 1960s South Korea has experienced rapid industrialisation, urbanisation and demographic change. These changes gave rise to social problems to which the state responded through the development of a welfare regime. The development of this welfare regime has also been heavily influenced by Confucianism, which emphasises the responsibility of the family to care for its members.

WOMEN RECONCILING PAID AND UNPAID WORK IN A CONFUCIAN WELFARE STATE: THE CASE OF SOUTH KOREA

S. Sung

Social Policy and Administration, vol. 37, 2003, p.342-360

The participation of married women in the labour market has been increasing in South Korea since the industrialisation of the 1960s. The state has responded with numerous reforms to help women balance work and family life. For example, parental leave was introduced in 1995 and maternity benefits in 2001. However, these policies may not be particularly effective in Korea, where Confucian traditions in respect of women's roles remain strong. Confucianism teaches respect for elders and assigns a subordinate role to women as self-sacrificing daughters, mothers and wives. It also requires married women to care for their parents-in-law.

THE WELFARE WE WANT? : THE BRITISH CHALLENGE FOR AMERICAN REFORM

R. Walker and M. Wiseman

The Policy Press: Bristol, 2003

In the UK, both Consevative and Labour welfare strategies have been infuenced by American politics. British welfare reform has continued in recent years, while American policies appear to have stagnated. What now are the lessons of British reform for America? This book presents a detailed comparison of welfare policies in the two countries and summarises the results to date. The editors argue that recent American reforms have failed to address key problems but that British ideas could refresh the American policy agenda.

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