The Future of the Social Investment State: Politics, Policies and Outcomes

1st Edition

Marius R. Busemeyer, Caroline de la Porte, Julian L. Garritzmann, Emmanuele Pavolini

Published August 29, 2018
Reference - 164 Pages
ISBN 9781138318175 - CAT# K391497
Series: Journal of European Public Policy Series

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Social investment is part of a strategy to modernize the European welfare states by focusing on human resource development throughout the life-course, while ensuring financial sustainability. The last decades have seen cost containment in areas such as pensions and health care, but also expansion in areas such as early childhood education, higher education and active labor market policies. This development is linked to a Social Investment (SI) approach, which should, ideally, promote a better reconciliation of work and family life, high levels of labor market productivity and strong economic growth, while also mitigating social inequality. However, institutionalization of policies that may mainly benefit the middle class has some unintended effects, such as perpetuating new inequalities and the creation of other Matthew effects. While research on the rise of the social investment state as a new paradigm of social policy-making for European welfare states has grown significantly, there are still important gaps in the literature. The chapters in this book address the controversies around social investment related to inequalities, individual preferences and the politics of social investment. This volume is therefore organized around policies, politics and outcomes. The contributing authors bring together expert knowledge and different perspectives on SI from several disciplines, with original path-breaking empirical contributions, addressing some key questions that thus far are unanswered, related to Matthew effects, inequalities, ambiguities of social investment and institutional complementarities. Furthermore, it is the first volume that covers the core policy areas of social investment: childcare, education and labour market policies.

The chapters in this book were originally published in a special issue of the Journal of European Public Policy.

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