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Social Policy and CitizenshipThe Changing Landscape$
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Adalbert Evers and Anne-Marie Guillemard

Print publication date: 2012

Print ISBN-13: 9780199754045

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: January 2013

DOI: 10.1093/acprof:oso/9780199754045.001.0001

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Changes in Social Citizenship in France in A Comparative Perspective: “Activation Strategies” and their Traces

Changes in Social Citizenship in France in A Comparative Perspective: “Activation Strategies” and their Traces

Chapter:
(p.150) 7 Changes in Social Citizenship in France in A Comparative Perspective: “Activation Strategies” and their Traces
Source:
Social Policy and Citizenship
Author(s):

Jean-Claude Barbier

Publisher:
Oxford University Press
DOI:10.1093/acprof:oso/9780199754045.003.0032

One of the main reforms of “social citizenship” in the past 20 years has certainly been the gradual introduction of “activation” strategies across an increasing number of policy fields. Firstly, the normative discourses that justify social policy, and benefit distribution in particular, have changed in tone: an ideological shift has been documented, incorporating a rhetoric concerning “duties” and “rights.” It is not only the levels of benefits available that have changed, but much broader “benefits” are involved, which individuals gain from participating in society, including for instance the right to share the advantages of full employment with others, and they also benefit from the “right” not to be put in a stigmatized category and the right to have their autonomy as an individual respected. Considerable national variation has persisted in this respect. In Scandinavian countries, the strategy for activating social protection has been accompanied by a broad and open public debate. The situation has been very different when activation reforms were introduced in other countries, such as Germany, France, or the United Kingdom.

Keywords:   activation strategies, workfare, social assistance, employment policies, social protection

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