Click here to skip to content

Welfare Reform on the Web (November 2005): Welfare State - Overseas

Chancellor condemns EU social system

J. Blitz

Financial Times, October 13th 2005, p.1

Gordon Brown today launches a blunt attack on the European Union's social model, warning that the high level of unemployment across the continent means Europe's "old" economic system "is not working".

Elite consensus on the Norwegian welfare state model

T. Gulbrandsen and F. Engelstad

West European Politics, vol.28, 2005, p.898-918

Results indicate that the majority of the Norwegian elites still support the basic institutions of policies of the welfare state and the political compromises upon which they are based. They express strong support for the system of centralised wage settlements, a main element in the industrial relations system. They rally around continued economic transfers to rural districts. A majority (albeit small) of the elite groups prefers to uphold the present state model of production and distribution of welfare services. The private business elite stands virtually alone in its preference for significant changes. Other groups, such as the academic elite, the media and church leaders are supporters of the Norwegian welfare state model.

Frozen Landscapesí revisited: path creation in the European social model

S. Lessenich

Social Policy and Society, vol. 4, 2005, p.345-356

The institutional paralysis of Continental European social policy has become common wisdom in comparative welfare state research. The article seeks to challenge the picture of an inherently immovable and 'frozen' world of welfare capitalism. In confronting 'path dependence' theory with the concept of 'path creation', the author argues that there are ways out of 'path dependence' precisely in those welfare states that embody the institutional heritage of what may be called the 'European Social Model'. A short account of the recent transformation of social insurance institutions in Germany illustrates this thesis.

The Governance and politics of global social policy

B. Deacon

Social Policy and Society, vol. 4, 2005, p.437-445

The paper reviews recent contributions to the literature concerning 'global social policy' - understood as global social redistribution, global social regulation and global social rights. It traces recent developments in, and aspects of, the mechanisms of global redistribution. Then, it discusses developments in the governance of global social policy, arguing that this is increasingly the province of global networks, partnerships and task forces somewhat removed from public scrutiny.

Policy transfer and the internationalisation of social policy

R. Hulme

Social Policy and Society, vol. 4, 2005, p.417-425

The article analyses the theoretical utility of policy transfer in developing perspectives on international and comparative social policy. It argues that existing work on policy transfer provides us with a theoretical tool to connect perspectives on international policy change. The article also highlights the role of 'epistemic communities' in policy-oriented learning, particularly in education.

'Provisioning': conceptualizing the work of women for 21st century social policy

S.M. Neysmith and M. Reitsma-Street

Women's Studies International Forum, vol.28, 2005, p.381-391

Women have been disproportionately affected by the dismantling of social welfare in the late 20th century. They have come under pressure to attain independence through entry into the labour market, but have been denied access to well paid, secure jobs. This article explores the utility of the new concept of provisioning for analysing innovative strategies that groups of women are using to provide for themselves, their families and their neighbourhoods. Provisioning is defined as consisting of a range of daily activities that are performed to ensure the survival and well-being of the woman and her dependents. They include a range of caring activities as well as paid work. Article goes on to examine the implications of findings from research using interviews with women in four Canadian cities living on low incomes who are also part of what might be called provisioning communities.

Welfare states as nation states: some conceptual reflections

J. Clarke

Social Policy and Society, vol. 4, 005, p.407-415

Social policy has treated welfare states as nation states. Contemporary processes seem to have unsettled the spatial, scalar and social coherence of nation-states. The article examines the challenge of rethinking the relationships of nation, state and welfare. It also argues for a transnational conception of both the current remakings of nation, state and welfare, and of their past formations.

Search Welfare Reform on the Web