© 2016

The Regional Politics of Welfare in Italy, Spain and Great Britain

Part of the Comparative Territorial Politics book series (COMPTPOL)

About this book


This book is a study of the increasing territorial variations in the development of sub-national welfare systems that have occurred as an effect of the decentralization of health care and social assistance policies in Italy, Spain and Great Britain. The author examines the political factors that underlie these variations by combining cross-regional and cross-country comparisons using mixed methods. Vampa’s main finding is that regionalist parties have played a key role in sub-national welfare building and have used social policy to strengthen their legitimacy in the political struggle against central authorities. In this context, functional political competition between Left and Right has been partly replaced by territorial competition between Centre and Periphery as the main determinant of social policy making. Additionally, mainstream left-wing parties have been torn between maintaining territorial uniformity in social protection and responding to demands for more extensive social services tailored to the needs and preferences of specific regional communities. This book will be of use to academics and policy makers interested in political economy, devolution/decentralisation, welfare, and party politics. 


Regionalism Decentralisation Health care Social assistance Territorial politics Social policy Social services

Authors and affiliations

  1. 1.Department of Politics and Public PolicyDe Montfort UniversityLeicesterUnited Kingdom

About the authors

Davide Vampa is Senior Lecturer at the Department of Politics and Public Policy, De Montfort University, UK. Previously he was Assistant Professor at the University of Nottingham, Teaching Fellow at SOAS and Guest Teacher at LSE. He has published several papers on the spatial transformation of welfare systems and multilevel party politics.

Bibliographic information

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“Vampa's book remains a very persuasive effort to measure and explain the interesting phenomenon of the regionalization (or de-nationalization) of welfare systems, by linking politics with policy. It will be of interest to scholars of comparative politics, as well as of public policy and administration. In addition, the study also raises questions on the changing meaning of social citizenship in contemporary states, providing empirical evidence which calls for (normative) theoretical reflections.” (Emanuele Massetti, Public Administration, 2017)