The Welfare State in a State of Crisis?

Author: Jacek Tittenbrun
Institution: Adam Mickiewicz University in Poznań
Year of publication: 2013
Source: Show
Pages: 149-169
DOI Address:
PDF: kie/99/kie9908.pdf

The paper sets out to deconstruct two concepts featuring in the title. Firstly, a novel definition of the welfare state based on economic ownership is presented, used then throughout the paper to examine the facts behind the widespread view of the welfare state finding itself in a crisis. Upon scrutiny, it turns out that empirical evidence to support the thesis under investigation is weak at best; neither globalisation nor Europeanization bring about any significant quantitative or qualitative worsening of welfare parameters. In addition, it is imperative not to put all the welfare states into one bag, as they in fact represent a plethora of diverse social-protection regimes.


  • Amable B., Barré R., Boyer R., Les Systèmes d’Innovation à l’Ére de la Globalisation, Paris 1997.
  • Baldwin R.E., Krugman P., Agglomeration, Integration and Tax Harmonization, “Bulletin of the Centre for Economic Policy Research” 2001, No. 76/Spring, pubs/dsp/dp2630.
  • Bonoli G., David N., The Politics of the New Welfare State, Oxford 2012.
  • Castles F.G., The Future of the Welfare State: Crisis Myths and Crisis Realities, Oxford 2004.
  • Comité des Sages, For a Europe of Civic and Social Rights, Brussels 1996.
  • Commission Européenne, Livre blanc de la Commission sur la croissance, la compétitivité et l’emploi–COM (93) 700, “Bulletin de l’Union Européenne” 1993, No. 12, Brussels.
  • Council of the European Union, Document 14011/00, SOC 462 (Annex), 2000.
  • Delors J., Our Europe, London 1992.
  • Döring H., Public Perception of the Proper Role of the State [in:] The State in Western Europe: Retreat or Redefinition, W.C. Müller, V. Wright (eds.), London 1994.
  • Ebbinghaus B., Does a European Social Model Exist and Can It Survive? [in:] The Role of Employer Associations and Labour Unions in the EMU: Institutional Requirements for European Economic Policies, G. Huemer, M. Mesch, F. Traxler (eds.), Aldershot 1999.
  • Ebbinghaus B., European Labor Relations and Welfare-State Regimes: A Comparative Analysis of their “Elective Affinities”, Paper presented at the Conference on Varieties of Welfare Capitalism in Europe, North America, and Japan, Cologne 1998.
  • Ebbinghaus B., Manow P. (eds.), Comparing Welfare Capitalism: Social Policy and Political Economy in Europe, Japan and the USA, London 2001.
  • Emerson M., What Model for Europe?, Boston 1988.
  • Esping-Andersen G., The Three Worlds of Welfare Capitalism, Princeton 1990.
  • European Commission, Industrial Relations in Europe, Official Publication Office of the European Communities, Luxemburg 2009.
  • Ferrera M., Rhodes M., Recasting European Welfare States: An Introduction, “Western European Politics” 2000, No. 23.
  • Ferrera M., The New Spatial Politics of Welfare in the EU [in:] Bonoli G., David N., The Politics of the New Welfare State, Oxford 2012.
  • Flora P., Introduction [in:] Growth to Limits: The Western European Welfare States since World War II, P. Flora (ed.), Berlin 1986.
  • Giddens A., Beyond Left and Right, Cambridge 1994.
  • Grahl J., Teague P., Is the European Social Model Fragmenting?, “New Political Economy” 1997, No. 2, Vol. 3.
  • Hancké B., Rhodes M., Thatcher M. (eds.), Beyond Varieties of Capitalism: conflict, contradictions and complementarities in the European economy, Oxford 2007.
  • Hantrais L., French Social Policy in the European Context, “Modern and Contemporary France” 1995, No. 3, Vol. 4.
  • Hemerijck A., Manow P., The Experience of Negotiated Reforms in the Dutch and German Welfare States [in:] Comparing Welfare Capitalism: Social Policy and Political Economy in Europe, Japan and the USA, B. Ebbinghaus, P. Manow (eds.), London 2001.
  • Jackson G., La Compétitivité et l’Égalitarisme Allemands et Japonais à l’Épreuve, “Critique Internationale” 2001, No. 8.
  • Korpi W., Contentious Institutions: An Augmented Rational-Action Analysis of the Origins and Path Dependency of Welfare State Institutions in Western Countries, “Rationality and Society” 2001, No. 2, Vol. 13.
  • Korpi W., Palme J., New Politics and Class Politics in the Context of Austerity and Globalization: Welfare State Regress in 18 Countries, 1975 – 95, “American Political Science Review” 2003, No. 3, Vol. 97.
  • Korpi W., Power, Politics, and State Autonomy in the Development of Social Citizenship: Social Rights During Sickness in Eighteen OECD Countries Since 1930, “American Sociological Review” 1989, No. 2, Vol. 54.
  • Korpi W., Welfare-State Regress in Western Europe: Politics, Institutions, Globalization, and Europeanization, “Annual Review of Sociology” 2003, No. 29.
  • Laffan B., The European Union: A Distinctive Model of Internationalization?, “Journal of European Public Policy” 1998, No. 5.
  • Leibfried S., Pierson P. (eds.), European Social Policy: Between Fragmentation and Integration, Washington 1995.
  • Leibfried S., Pierson P., Semisovereign Welfare States: Social Policy in a Multitiered Europe [in:] European Social Policy: Between Fragmentation and Integration, S. Leibfried, P. Pierson (eds.), Washington 1995.
  • Liebfried S. (ed.), Welfare State Futures, Cambridge 2001. Liebfried S., Towards a European Welfare State? [in:] New Perspectives on the Welfare State in Europe, C. Jones (ed.), London 1993.
  • Martin A., What Does Globalization Have to Do With the Erosion of Welfare States? Sorting out the Issues, “ZeS-Arbeitspapier” 1997, No. 1.
  • Pierson P., Irresistible Forces, Immovable Objects: Post-Industrial Welfare States Confront Permanent Austerity, “Journal of European Public Policy” 1998, No. 5.
  • Pierson P., Skeptical Reflections on “Globalization” and the Welfare State, Paper presented at the International Conference on Socio-Economics, Montreal, July 1997.
  • Pierson P., Smith M., Bourgeois Revolutions?, “Comparative Political Studies” 1993, No. 25.
  • Pierson P., The New Politics of the Welfare State, “World Politics” 1996, No. 48.
  • Scharpf F.W., Combating Unemployment in Continental Europe: Policy Options under Internationalization (RSC Policy Paper 3), Florence 1997.
  • Scharpf F.W., Crisis and Choice in European Social Democracy, Ithaca, NY 1991.
  • Scharpf F.W., Economic Changes, Vulnerabilities, and Institutional Capabilities [in:] Welfare and Work In the Open Economy, Vol. I: From Vulnerability to Competitiveness, F.W. Scharpf, V.A. Schmidt (eds.), Oxford 2000.
  • Scharpf F.W., Economic Integration, Democracy and the Welfare state, “Journal of European Public Policy” 1997, No. 1, Vol. 4.
  • Scharpf F.W., Games Real People Play: Actor-Centered Institutionalism in Policy Research, Boulder, CO 1997.
  • Scharpf F.W., Governing in Europe, Oxford 2000.
  • Scharpf F.W., Negative and Positive Integration in the Political Economy of European Welfare States [in:] Governance in the European Union, G. Marks et al. (eds.), London 1996.
  • Scharpf F.W., Politische Immobilismus und ökonomische Krise. Aufsätze zu den politischen Restriktionen der Wirtschaft spolitik in der Bundesrepublik, Königstein/Ts 1977.
  • Scharpf F.W., Schmidt V.A. (eds.), Welfare and Work in the Open Economy, Vol. I: From Vulnerability to Competitiveness, Vol. II: Diverse Responses to Common Challenges, Oxford 2000.
  • Scharpf F.W., The Joint-Decision Trap: Lessons from German Federalism and European Integration, “Public Administration” 1988, No. 66.
  • Schmidt V.A., The Futures of European Capitalism, Oxford 2005.
  • Schmidt V.A., Values and Discourse in the Politics of Welfare State Adjustment [in:] Welfare and Work in the Open Economy, Vol. 1: From Vulnerability to Competitiveness, F.W. Scharpf, V.A. Schmidt (eds.), Oxford 2000.
  • Stokke O.S., Qualitative Comparative Analysis, Shaming, and International Regime Effectiveness, “Journal of Business Research” 2007, No 5, Vol. 60.
  • Streeck W., Lean Production in the German Automobile Industry: A Test Case for Convergence Theory [in:] National Diversity and Global Capitalism, S. Berger, R. Dore (eds.), Ithaca, NY 1996.
  • Swank D., Funding the Welfare State: Globalization and the Taxation of Business in Advanced Market Economies, “Political Studies” 1998, No. 46.
  • Swank D., Globalisation, Democratic Institutions and the Welfare State, Paper presented at the American Political Science Association National Meetings, Washington, DC, 30 August–3 September 2000.
  • Swank D., Withering Welfare? Globalization, Political Economic Institutions, and Contemporary Welfare States [in:] States in the Global Economy: Bringing Domestic Institutions Back In, Linda Weiss (ed.), Cambridge 2002.
  • Taylor-Gooby P. (ed.), New Risks, New Welfare: The Transformation of the European Welfare State, Oxford 2004.
  • Taylor-Gooby P., The Silver Age of the Welfare State: Perspectives on Resilience, “Journal of Social Policy” 2002, No. 4, Vol. 31.
  • Taylor-Gooby P., Sustaining Welfare in Hard Times: Who Will Foot the Bill?, “Journal of European Social Policy” 2001, No 2, Vol. 11.
  • Tittenbrun J., Economy in Society. Economic Sociology Revisited, Cambridge 2011.
  • Tittenbrun J., Ownership and Social Differentiation, Saarbrucken 2011.
  • Tittenbrun J., Two Capitalisms [in:] Capitalism or Capitalisms?, J. Tittenbrun (ed.), Szczecin 2009.
  • Trachtman J.P., International Regulatory Competition, Externalization, and Jurisdiction, “Harvard International Law Journal” 1993, No. 34.
  • Verdun A., An “Asymmetrical” Economic and Monetary Union in the EU: Perceptions of Monetary Authorities and Social Partners, “Journal of European Integration” 1996, No. 1, Vol. 20.
  • Verdun A., The Role of the Delors Committee in the Creation of EMU: An Epistemic Community?, “Journal of European Public Policy” 1999, No. 6.
  • Vogel S.K., Freer Markets, More Rules: Regulatory Reform in Advanced Industrial Countries, Ithaca, NY 1996.
  • Wade R., Globalization and its Limits: Reports of the Death of the National Economy are Greatly Exaggerated [in:] National Diversity and Global Capitalism, S.  Berger, R. Dore (eds.), Ithaca, NY 1996.

welfare state crisis globalisation state

Message to:



© 2017 Adam Marszałek Publishing House. All rights reserved.

Projekt i wykonanie Pollyart