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Welfare reform on the Web (January 2007): Welfare state - Overseas

The institutional logic of welfare attitudes: how welfare regimes influence public support

C. A. Larsen

Aldershot: Ashgate, 2006

The book looks at the link between welfare state regimes and citizens’ welfare attitudes. It explores issues such as: deservingness, poverty and stigmatisation and provides a systematic cross-national comparison of attitudes towards poor and unemployed people. Substantial cross-regime differences in public support for welfare policy have been found from high support in social democratic (Scandinavian) regimes, medium support in conservative (Continental Europe) regimes to low support in liberal (Anglo Saxon) regimes, but these differences cannot simply be explained by differences in the attitudes of the middle class, the number of people who receive welfare benefits and services, or the number of public employees. The main contribution of this book is to develop a theoretical framework that explains how the institutional structure of the different welfare regimes influence public support for welfare policy.

The new global politics of poverty

A. Noel

Global Social Policy, vol.6, 2006, p.304-333

In recent years concern about poverty and its eradication has returned to the top of the political agenda for nationa states, social movements and international organisations. In itself, this new global agenda does not determine specific policy orientations, but it changes the terms of the debate between the Left and the Right. Poverty reduction allows the Right to claim that market-oriented policies and globalisation are not inimical to the poor, while it helps the Left to make redistribution and social justice central political issues. The article presents a constructivist approach to interpreting this shift in discourse.

Policy convergence and divergence in Belgium: education and health care

S. de Rynck and K. Dezeure

West European Politics, vol.29, 2006, p.1018-1033

This article compares education and health policies in Flanders and Wallonia and identifies the extent to which they have converged or diverged since federalisation. It finds far-reaching policy divergence between the Flemish and French Communities for education and the beginning of a divergence in health care. Radical changes in Flemish education policy have strengthened local autonomy and increased the influence of parents and civil society representatives. In health care, divergence is growing in terms of regulating access to the medical professions and defining the outputs of medical care.

Social enterprise: at the crossroads of market, public policies and civil society

M. Nyssens (editor)

Abingdon: Routledge, 2006

Social enterprises have been defined as organizations with the explicit aim of benefiting the community, initiated by a group of citizens and in which the material interest of capital investors is subject to limits. Such organizations, driven by an entrepreneurial spirit but focused on social aims, are emerging throughout Europe. This book develops a comparative European analysis within a multidisciplinary framework to explore social enterprises. It combines theory with an analysis of 160 social enterprises across 11 EU countries. The text is structured around a number of key themes including:

  • Multiple goals and multiple stakeholders
  • Multiple resources
  • Trajectories of workers
  • Public policies
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