Welfare State Futures: Our Children's Europe


How will European welfare states develop in the future? Which expectations, ideas and aspirations do European citizens have in relation with public welfare provision and social security? In their view, what should be the main emphasis to ensure welfare and social security for the coming generations?
The main objective of the project is to get a better understanding of how citizens view and imagine the future of European welfare states. The project is future-oriented and centres around three main research questions:
1. What are the aspirations and expectations of ordinary citizens with regard to the future of the welfare state in their children’s Europe. What are their priorities and how strongly are they held? How are their preferences justified?
2. Which assumptions and values underlie the attitudinal patterns? How do people understand and interprete the factors driving change? How do fiscal and other constraints enter into people s views on the welfare state?
3. How does the changing social, political and economic context of welfare policy interact with people’s expectations and attitudes? Which new cleavages and solidarities are emerging?
The countries participating in the project are Germany, the United Kingdom, Norway, Denmark, the Netherlands and Slovenia. The German subproject of the proposed research program - Welfare State Futures: Our Children’s Europe: WelfSOC - analyses the German welfare state and the expectations, values and attitudes of the German citizens and puts the case into comparative context.
The project is using an innovative methodological approach to examine the research questions mentioned above. Deliberative democratic forums as well as focus group interviews will be employed to scrutinize the attitudes of European citizens on welfare solidarity and social justice and the underlying discourses from a cross-national perspective. The objective is to gain insight into prevailing principles of justice and solidarity as well as dominant cleavages in various European countries and to spell out directions of possible social policy reforms.

Principal Investigators
Mau, Steffen Prof. Dr. (Details) (Macro Sociology)

Duration of Project
Start date: 04/2015
End date: 10/2018

Research Areas
Empirical Social Research

Last updated on 2021-28-09 at 09:15