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The Europeanization of welfare: paradigm shifts and social policy reforms

AuthorsMoreno, Luis CSIC ORCID ; Palier, Bruno
Economic harmonisation
Welfare State
Social policies
European Social Model
Issue Date23-Apr-2005
PublisherConsejo Superior de Investigaciones Científicas (España)
CitationThe Europeanization of welfare: Paradigm shifts and social policy reforms, Serie Documentos de Trabajo, Instituto de Políticas y Bienes Públicos (CSIC), 05-2004
SeriesDocumento de Trabajo IPP, 05-2004
AbstractThe process of Europeanization implies a confluence of resources and outputs by the EU member states. This is mainly due to both structural economic harmonisation and institutional system-building. This paper deals with welfare developments in the European social model in contemporary times. After identifying major changes affecting European countries both functionally and territorially, EU initiatives in social policy-making are reviewed. New policies aimed at co-ordinating employment and social policies at the European level (OMC) have tried to offer perspectives for reconciling the dichotomies between the economic and the social and the national and the European. Hence, while a paradigm shift in macro-economic policies has allowed for monetary centralisation and a growing matching of EU internal 'open' markets, the quest for the decentralisation of welfare programmes has also aimed at meeting demands for territorial subsidiarity. Reforms related to the emergence of new social risks (NSR) may provide EU institutions with initiatives for making social policy reforms coherent with the new economic policy orientations, while also respecting national diversity. Speculative observations on whether there is convergence in social policy paradigms in European countries are carried out in the conclusion of the paper.
DescriptionPaper presented at the WRAMSOC Conference, 23-25 April, 2004, Berlin. Published in: P. Taylor-Gooby (ed.), Ideas and Welfare State Reform in Western Europe, 145-175, Basingstoke/Nueva York: Palgrave Macmillan, 2005
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