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Warfare and WelfareMilitary Conflict and Welfare State Development in Western Countries$
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Herbert Obinger, Klaus Petersen, and Peter Starke

Print publication date: 2018

Print ISBN-13: 9780198779599

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: August 2018

DOI: 10.1093/oso/9780198779599.001.0001

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War and Welfare States Before and After 1945

War and Welfare States Before and After 1945

Conclusions and Perspectives

(p.426) 15 War and Welfare States Before and After 1945
Warfare and Welfare

Herbert Obinger

Klaus Petersen

Carina Schmitt

Peter Starke

Oxford University Press

The conclusion reports major findings and discusses possible cross-country patterns. It shows that war’s impact on welfare state development can be differentiated into several distinct conclusions, each highlighting specific effects or causal mechanisms. Next, the case study evidence of the long-term effects of war is confirmed with quantitative data. For a sample of eighteen countries (thirteen of which are presented in this volume) war is shown to contribute to a better understanding of several of the phenomena lying at the heart of comparative welfare state research (i.e. social expenditure, benefit generosity, the public–private mix in provision, and the timing of legislation). The impact on outcomes such as income inequality is briefly discussed, along with the impact of the Cold War on welfare state development. Due to changes in warfare and the size of the existing welfare state, the effect of war on welfare state-building has all but disappeared today.

Keywords:   war, welfare state, world wars, causal mechanisms, social expenditure, benefit generosity, public–private mix, Cold War, inequality, intrastate war

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