Comparative Social Policy

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1 Comparative Social Policy Developed by teachers Igor Guardiancich, University of Southern Denmark Page 1 of 5

2 Introduction This core module aims to provide theoretical basis of welfare state analysis, which is the main pillar for further specialization and for undertaking independent research. It is essential that the students participate in the contact hours, to learn together. The course consists of seminars, small group discussions, practical exercises (accessing comparative data, searching for research on an issue in the library, especially via e-journals on social policy and social work) which can be useful later during the education. The lectures, for the most part, will be intended to frame issues and to provide the background necessary to proceed with further independent research at a later stage. During the contact hours, half of the day will be used for lectures and half for practical exercises, individually and together. In addition, the University of Southern Denmark will provide the students with student card which provides access to the library, which has a wealth of information, data, and theoretical as well as practical research articles. In sum, this module will be devoted to give to the student theoretical knowledge about social policy, providing them with the skills of independent research, which can be useful for developing research papers and policy papers later during the career. Module aims / Learning Outcomes: On completion of the module, the student will be able to: Define and conceptualise the welfare state: what is it, how can it be analyzed? Describe the major theoretical frameworks for analysing social policy and discuss their limitations and strengths; Identify the historical, economic, social and political factors which shape social policy; Understand and conceptualise the key challenges that the welfare state has been facing since the early 1990s (demographic ageing, globalization, changing family patterns) and how the different types of welfare states have been reformed to respond to these challenges; Compare theoretical models and ideal-types with empirical evidence in different countries and for different contingencies (with a focus on family, child care policy and gender) Learn how to access comparative databases and journal articles Competencies The main competencies provided through this module are theoretical diagnosis of problems and challenges (using databases and existing research articles), as well as how to develop an individual research design in social policy as well as how to do policy analysis. The emphasis is put on the relationship between theories and empirical realities. Secondary competencies are policy advice (derived from research) and evaluation skills (evaluation of issues at stake in social policy at the macro-level). Literature Introduction and overview of the module: main theories and tools for the analysis of social policy. What is the social policy? Types of social policy (universalism vs. basic-safety net; different types of welfare state regimes) G. Esping-Andersen (1990), The Three Worlds of Welfare Capitalism, Polity Press, 1999: Oxford, pp and Page 2 of 5

3 Further Reading Titmuss, R. M. (1974) What is Social Policy? [chap. 2]. Social Administration and Social Welfare. [chap. 4]. In Social Policy: An Introduction. London: George Allen and Unwin. Analysing the solidity of the welfare state regimes approach Ferrera, M. (1996), The Southern Model of Welfare in Social Europe, Journal of European Social Policy, Vol.6, No.1, pp Arts, W. Gelissen J. Three worlds of welfare capitalism or more? Journal of European Social Policy (2002), SAGE Publications, London, Thousand Oaks and New Delhi, Vol.12 (2) Further Reading Montanari, I., Nelson, K. and Palme, J. (2008) Towards a European Social Model? Trends in social insurance among EU countries , European Societies 10 (5): Institutional aspects welfare state regimes and their effects Korpi, W. And Palme, J. (1998), «The Paradox of Redistribution and Strategies of Equality : Welfare State Institutions, Inequality and Poverty in the Western Countries», American Sociological Review, vol. 63, no. 5, Quadagno, J. Theories of the Welfare state, Annual Review of Sociology, Vol. 13 (1987), Welfare states in central and eastern Europe Alfio Cerami and Pieter Vanhuysse (2009) Poost-Communist welfare pathways. Theorizing social policy transformations in Central and Eastern Europe. Palgrave Macmillan. ISBN: Aidukaite, J , Old welfare state theories and new welfare regimes in Eastern Europe: Challenges and implications, Communist and Post-Communist Studies, Number 42, (16 pages) Suggested reading Pogátsa, Z. (2009), "Hungary : From Star Transition Student to Backsliding Member State", Journal of Contemporary European Research. Volume 5, Issue 4. ( ) De la Porte, C. (2009), The Role of the OECD and the EU in the Development of Labour Market Policy in the Czech Republic, Journal of Contemporary European Research. Volume 5, Issue 4. ( ) Challenges to welfare states (1) What are the key structural challenges in welfare states? How do these challenges vary across welfare state configurations? How have welfare states responded to these challenges P. Pierson (2001), Coping With Permanent Austerity: Welfare State Restructuring in Affluent Democracies, in The New Politics of the Welfare State, New York, Oxford University Press, 2000 ( ) Iversen, Torben and Wren, Anne (1998). 'Equality, Employment, and Budgetary Restraint: The Trilemma of the Service Economy', World Politics 50(4): Page 3 of 5

4 Challenges to the Welfare states (2) Analysis of challenges from a family and equality perspective Esping-Andersen, G. (2009), The Incomplete Revolution, Polity Press: Part 1 : The Challenges (17-18) Chapter 1 : "Families and the revolution in women s roles" (19-54) Chapter 2 : "The New Inequalities" (55-74) Family policy from a comparative perspective Esping-Andersen, G. (2009) Chapter 3: Adapting Family Policy to the Female Revolution (77-110) Family policy: Nordic countries and reform challenges in different welfare state regimes Datta Gupta et al. (2008), The impact of Nordic countries family policies on employment, wages and children, Review of Economics of the Household, vol. 6, no. 1 (65-89) Esping-Andersen, G (2009), The Incomplete Revolution, Polity press: Chapter 4: Investing in Children and Equalizing Opportunities ( ) Family Policy in the central and eastern European countries Fodor, Eva, Glass, Christy, Kawachi, Janette and Popescu, Livia Family Policies and Gender in Hungary, Poland and Romania. Communist and Post-Communist Studies 35: Pascall G. and Manning N Gender and Social Policy: comparing welfare states in Central and Eastern Europe and the former Soviet Union. Journal of European Social Policy, Vol. 10 (3): Aidukaite, J. (ed.) (2009) Poverty, Urbanity and Social Policy: Central and Eastern Europe Compared. Nova sciences: New York. Chapters 4 and 5. Gender, poverty and social policy Janneke Plantenga, Chantal Remery, Hugo Figueiredo and Mark Smith (2009) Towards a European Union Gender Equality Index. Journal of European Social Policy Vol 19(1): Korpi, Walter, (2000) Faces of Inequality: Gender, Class, and Patterns of Inequalities in Different Types of Welfare States, Social Politics International Studies in Gender, State and Society, 7:2, pp Further reading Lewis, J. (1992) Gender and the development of welfare regimes, Journal of European Social Policy, Vol 16 (3): Page 4 of 5

5 Organizational aspects of the module During the contact hours, at SDU in Odense, half the day will be lectures, and the second half will be more practical exercises (individually, in pairs or in groups). The lectures serve to teach students about theoretically driven analyses and understanding of social policy problems, challenges and responses. The practical exercises will be used to use this knowledge with empirical realities. Exercises include a professional oral presentation of a selected policy issue (to be agreed with the teachers during the intense lecture week in Odense). This presentation will count for 30% of the exam. The course builds up progressively to take the students through theoretical issues in a stepby-step process. A written assignment at the end of the course accounts for 70% of the examination. Study load Project management has a study load of 10 ECTS or 280 hours work load for the students. Assessment: (weighting and compulsory information) - Compulsory attendance to the on-site sessions in week 13 of the core semester. - Oral presentation during the course (30%). If a student is working alone, this should be a presentation of a case (one country within a particular policy area) and if the student is working together with another student, then this should be a presentation of two cases (two countries, one policy area or one country, two policy areas). - Final examination (70%). The final examination will be a 48 hour open book take home exam. It will consist of a written 10-page essay addressing key issues discussed throughout the course. The student will be evaluated on the basis of the analytical knowledge of the literature. Further Details: The written examination will be written in English, according to the standards of higher education in form and in content and will be submitted on-line on a given deadline. Criteria for evaluation and weighting by the teacher: Compulsory attendance to the on-site lectures and practical exercises Compulsory oral presentation (30% exam) Compulsory written examination (70% exam).it will also consist of a 5-day open book take home exam. If the student fails, then a new examination must be taken (one month after the original exam). It is also in essay format, but on the basis of different questions. Feedback during the working process Feedback will be given throughout the contact course and feedback on the oral presentation will be given on-site. The feedback on the written examination will be given later. Teacher Igor Guardiancich, Assistant Professor, University of Southern Denmark Page 5 of 5

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