De herverdelende werking van de innovatieve welvaartsstaat: een vergelijkende studie van Zweden, Nederland en België

Historically, welfare states emerged to guarantee fair life conditions to all and to do so, protected the full population against the adverse consequences of “social risks” such as illness, unemployment and disability. However, society has changed over time and “new” social risks (NSRs) emerged, such as the inability to reconcile paid work and care. Accordingly, welfare states developed new social policies. This research project aims to assess these adjustments in three welfare states (Belgium/Flanders, Sweden and the Netherlands) in a European comparative perspective, with the work-family conflict as a case in point. Since inequality is on the rise again in Europe, the overarching research question concerns the role of NSR policies in the redistributive capacity of welfare states. The question “who profits the most from social policies and is this distribution efficient?” is rarely subject of investigation but is of uttermost importance in the light of social policymaking subject to budgetary constraints and shifting priorities due to – for instance – population ageing. The project is innovative as it sheds new light on coverage for NSRs, fuels the theoretical debate on the mechanisms underlying welfare state redistribution and opens the way for policy innovation concerning a more equalizing distributional agenda.



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