PEIW Political Economy of Integration and Welfare

European integration and the expansion of the welfare state are closely related institutional innovations of the postwar era. Together, these innovations contributed effectively for many decades to the development of economic growth, social solidarity, and public well-being. But today they have people worried, not merely because of the straitened fiscal aftermath of the global financial and Eurozone sovereign debt crises.Existing policy repertoires no longer seem able to effectively buffer and mitigate many social and economic risks. On the one hand, changes in employment patterns and family structures have eroded the effectiveness of social protection systems built around the male breadwinner. On the other, the success of European market integration and the travails of monetary union have challenged the autonomy and stability of national social and economic policy-making. read more