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The Future of the Welfare StateCrisis Myths and Crisis Realities$
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Francis G. Castles

Print publication date: 2004

Print ISBN-13: 9780199270170

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: November 2004

DOI: 10.1093/0199270171.001.0001

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Towards a Steady-state Welfare State?

Towards a Steady-state Welfare State?

(p.167) 8 Towards a Steady-state Welfare State?
The Future of the Welfare State

Francis G. Castles (Contributor Webpage)

Oxford University Press

Seeks to draw the main implications of the previous analysis. It argues that, in recent decades, rather than being under immediate threat, the welfare state in most Western nations has been approaching steady state, with expenditure levels that are unlikely to change radically in coming years. In aggregate terms, the biggest remaining divide is between high spending social security and state services of the states of Continental Western Europe and the poverty-alleviation states of the English-speaking world. The book concludes by arguing that, despite convergence at the aggregate expenditure level, different families of nations have distinctively different welfare state priorities and different problems.

Keywords:   convergence, crisis threats, expenditure trends, social expenditure, steady-state welfare, welfare state challenges, welfare state futures, welfare state problems, within-system convergence

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