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Handbook of International Social WorkHuman Rights, Development, and the Global Profession$
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Lynne M. Healy and Rosemary J. Link

Print publication date: 2011

Print ISBN-13: 9780195333619

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: January 2012

DOI: 10.1093/acprof:oso/9780195333619.001.0001

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Variations and Issues of Survival of European Welfare State Models in the Twenty-First Century

Variations and Issues of Survival of European Welfare State Models in the Twenty-First Century

Chapter:
(p.430) 65 Variations and Issues of Survival of European Welfare State Models in the Twenty-First Century
Source:
Handbook of International Social Work
Author(s):

Sven Hessle

Publisher:
Oxford University Press
DOI:10.1093/acprof:oso/9780195333619.003.0065

The concept of the welfare state has its roots in Europe. For that reason one would expect to find in Europe an advanced, ongoing discourse on social policy. But the ambitions of the growing region to become an important economic force in the world might have delayed the social dimension in the European agenda. There are ambitions of a common European social policy, but the convergence efforts seem to meet resistance from national welfare states that may have sociocultural traditions to defend. This chapter shows that the social dimension came rather late to the European agenda, and it has so far been subordinated to economic issues. Social policy has showed deviating development in various parts of Europe, especially pronounced when comparing the Nordic region with southern countries and the former Communist countries in transition.

Keywords:   welfare state, European social policy, Nordic region, former Communist countries

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