Modernization of the European Model of Social Protection

  • Joakim Palme


European countries have developed advanced systems of social protection. By establishing a universal model of social protection, where benefits and services based on residence are combined with earnings-related social insurance programmes, the Nordic countries have followed a distinctive development path. It has been a successful strategy for combating poverty and social inequalities but also for promoting employment and participation, particularly among women. However, the emergence of mass unemployment has not only threatened public finances, it has also triggered a crisis for the welfare state. Even though several aspects of the crisis are now behind us, it has highlighted a number of dilemmas for reform work, and we need a strategy for resolving these dilemmas without diluting the socio-political and moral content of the welfare state model. This chapter tries to identify important elements of such a strategy in the perspective of the ‘modernization’ project of European social protection.


Labour Market Welfare State Nordic Country Social Protection Lone Parent 
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Copyright information

© Joakim Palme 2005

Authors and Affiliations

  • Joakim Palme
    • 1
  1. 1.Institute for Future StudiesStockholmSweden

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