Age in the Welfare State: The Origins of Social Spending on by Julia Lynch

By Julia Lynch

This booklet asks why a few nations dedicate the lion's proportion in their social coverage assets to the aged, whereas others have a extra balanced repertoire of social spending. faraway from being the end result of calls for for welfare spending via robust age-based teams in society, the 'age' of welfare is an unintentional end result of ways that social courses are arrange. the best way that politicians use welfare nation spending to compete for votes, alongside both programmatic or particularistic traces, locks those early institutional offerings into position. So whereas society is altering - getting older, divorcing, relocating out and in of the hard work strength over the existence direction in new methods - social guidelines don't evolve to trap up. the end result, in occupational welfare states like Italy, the us, and Japan, is social spending that favors the aged and leaves working-aged adults and youngsters principally to fend for themselves.

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Additional info for Age in the Welfare State: The Origins of Social Spending on Pensioners, Workers, and Children (Cambridge Studies in Comparative Politics)

Example text

This chapter focuses, more modestly, on the distribution of benefits to different age groups carried out through three key areas of public policy: direct social expenditures on social insurance benefits, education, and health care; tax expenditures on welfare-substituting goods; and housing policies. , occupational pension schemes in France) are included. The age categories employed throughout this analysis are elderly and non-elderly. These categories are rather ungainly as compared with seniors and children, or labor market participants versus dependents.

Using housing tenure data from the Luxembourg Income Study (LIS), I evaluate how well governments live up to their stated housing goals, and how this varies across age groups in the population. I derive the country’s housing policy goals from secondary literature (Boleat 1985; Balchin 1996) and from the responses of housing policy officials to a survey conducted by the European Union (EU) on housing policy priorities (Dumon 1992). For some countries, the housing policy priority is to promote home ownership among the widest possible swath of the population.

A detailed survey of the beneficiaries of labor market policies could be undertaken in order to “allocate” spending to categories of older and younger workers (chapter 5 undertakes such a study for Italy and the Netherlands). For the present, it is enough to note that countries vary widely in their average generosity toward the unemployed, even taking into account programs that do not find their way into comparisons of the replacement rates of standard unemployment insurance benefits. The Scandinavian countries resume their accustomed position as welfare leaders when we turn to labor market policy spending directed toward working-age adults.

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