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Table of contents
- European welfare state: current challenges and perspectives
- Survival of the European Welfare State - ARENA Centre for European Studies
- The European Social Union as a “union of national welfare states”: a legal perspective
- Our Bestsellers
Here you will learn how to interpret scientific literature; The operational section relates to the practical mechanism behind how the welfare state operates in the EU, requiring students to deepen their understanding of how social policy structures interact. Globalization process gained momentum after In this process which was based on economic liberalization, the neoliberal model became dominant and the idea that state should abandon its active role in social policies was adopted.
In some developed countries, which had been practicing the neoliberal model, social policy implementations began to lose their importance, and they were completely neglected in less developed countries. The effects of globalization became more evident at the end of the twentieth century, and the welfare state had less intrusive character with regard to taking measures for social protection due to the pressure caused by social expenditures and increased taxes.
With the adoption of the dominant view that social expenditures hampered economic growth, the shrinking of welfare states and reduction of its role on social policies gained momentum. Due to the increasing competition between the welfare states, poverty and unemployment have increased, and injustices have emerged in the distribution of income [ 21 ]. The narrowing of social welfare state practices in the process of globalization caused social rights to be restricted.
State shrinks through liberalization. The possibility of the deterioration of the balance between capital and labor, which was tried to be established after the industrial revolution, threatens those who are in need of social protection. The increasing unemployment rate is one of the most important threats. In the process of globalization, contrary to their liberal philosophy, the states that turned into neoliberal models needed to further develop their social policy practices.
Developments show that, contrary to expectations, the model adopted in the process of globalization deepens the problems of social policies further. The impacts of globalization on the welfare state model and social policies are evaluated from four different perspectives, which are: According to Mishra; globalization eliminates the independence of nation states. Economic growth is the sole target. International wage inequality and poverty increase due to economic pressures, and social protection is weakening.
Welfare of nation states decreases with neoliberal policies [ 31 ]. According to Pierson, globalization alone is not the reason for the reduction of the power of welfare states.
As an external power, globalization may require renewal in the structuring of states, but this restructuring should not be a reduction of social policies. In this process, states should also take into account the internal effects such as demographic, migration, and social developments and decide on the restructuring process accordingly [ 32 ]. According to Esping-Anderson, nation states should prefer more balanced practices on the axis of globalization.
Nation states with strong economic and political structures should prefer the most harmonious practices for their own future while guiding globalization [ 27 ].
European welfare state: current challenges and perspectives
According to Rieger and Leibfried, globalization emerged as a result of efforts of the nation states to reduce the negative effects of war with the liberal model. The economies of nation states are independent of the global economy; therefore, the restructuring process and the establishment of relevant policies should be evaluated in this respect [ 33 ]. The causes of the crisis of the welfare state in developed countries are globalization which is an external factor and internal variables which are related to the social structures of states. One of these reasons is the demographic structure, which has changed because of the aging population, prolongation of life, and decreasing birth rates.
In addition, family structure has changed, divorces have increased, public expenditures, pension and health expenditures, and taxes have increased, and economic growth has declined. The competitive power of the countries in the international arena has decreased due to the increase in the expenditures of the welfare state to ensure social welfare.
Having been in search of providing solution for the elimination of the financial pressures caused by the expenditures related to increased welfare, the welfare states have entered into a restructuring process. In the restructuring and surviving process, the financial pressure was tried to be eased through the privatization of the pension system, raising the retirement age, increasing the premiums, and reducing the financial pressure. With the shrinkage in the welfare state, the provision of welfare services has also changed. It seems hard to foresee the future state of welfare state clearly because of variables.
Welfare state changes based on social, economic, cultural, and demographic structures of states. It does not seem possible to provide financing of welfare statement with traditional methods. Especially financial crisis, welfare state had a view that a system in which the main player is the state is not sufficient for economic growth. The increasing unemployment is an obstacle for the welfare state growth.
Moreover, the population of many states is getting older, and the demographic structure is changing. Labor markets need to be supported, new jobs need to be created, and employment needs to be increased.
Survival of the European Welfare State - ARENA Centre for European Studies
Therefore, states determined their policies. Public expenditures are increasing due to increasing pension payments with the aging population. The expectations that welfare state provides welfare are increasing more and more. The approaches for providing welfare are different.
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Some states adopt liberal approaches, some states adopt corporatist and some others adopt universal approaches. In recent years, the belief that economic policies are not sufficient for achieving a welfare state but that welfare state needs to be achieved through social policies has been increasing. Although many arguments have been raised in discussions on the future of the welfare state, it is possible to say that the rightist and leftist views are more dominant. The rightists argue that the welfare state can overcome the crisis only by shifting to neoliberal policies.
They also argue that the obligatory change that took place in the industrial revolution is also valid for the Information Age which emerged in the last quarter of the twentieth century and that social policies need to be developed by the supranational organizations after the change of welfare state. For the leftists, they argue that welfare states have the ability to adapt themselves changing conditions; and therefore, they can overcome the crisis through reforms and restructuring. It is suggested that the neo-Keynesian approaches should be adopted instead of the neoliberal approach in the reform process.bbmpay.veritrans.co.id/crdoba-conocer-gente-gratis.php
The European Social Union as a “union of national welfare states”: a legal perspective
The New Right is focused on the role of bureaucracy and pressure groups. The globalization, which has been cited as a reason for the transformation of the welfare state and social policies, increases its influence with the participation of international organizations such as World Bank, World Health Organization, and International Monetary Fund [ 13 , 34 , 35 ]. Nation states should implement policies in economic and social spheres not based on external processes but based on internal dynamics. As stated above, although they have similar features, each country has different applications for social protection.
Here, the main important thing is to determine the impacts of change on demographic and cultural structures of the countries and make intervention properly. In summary, it is the choice of national political authorities to present the effects of globalization as the only reason for their national policies. Instead of this perspective, it would be a more realistic approach to try to benefit from the positive impacts of globalization for reducing problems at the national level. By this way, it would be possible to develop more effective tools to prevent the increasing social problems.
Welfare states are still developing. States are in search for better work and life conditions. They want to have social security systems which cover all social risks. From this perspective, it is possible to say that there is not a real crisis in welfare states, but there are efforts to remove obstacles before the economic growth. Welfare states need to make regulations to decrease unemployment rates, taxes, and public expenditures because of the decline in economic growth [ 17 ].
There seems to be a tendency for narrowing in social policies because the proportion of social expenditures in public expenditures is high. These practices, which were put into practice in s and which aimed to be active in the labor market, were based on regulations that encourage working and restricting passive expenditures. In order to reduce the passive expenditures, the period of benefiting from social benefits was shortened, and their conditions were made difficult. When the impact of the reform implementations on social expenditures is evaluated, it is seen that poverty of children has increased and the works for giving family aids and providing vocation education have been insufficient.
It is obvious that retirement age and health expenditures will continue to increase due to the aging population. It is possible to say that the increase of passive expenditures due to the aging of the population constitutes an obstacle before realization of active and passive reforms [ 37 ]. As a result, welfare states continue to exist in different ways. The developments show that the view that social rights, freedoms, and ideological thoughts are not sufficient to achieve the economic growth.
It is possible to say that the welfare states having this view will follow impartial policies about making social expenditures in future years. In this study, the social policy and the welfare state are handled with their goals, scopes, types, and problems from their historical development up to today. Social policy is a set of measures developed to protect workers against the dangers arising as a result of industrialization, in parallel to the historical development, after the industrial revolution. Its emergence in this way has caused the social policies to be defined in a narrow sense.