How can we best analyse contemporary welfare state change? And how can we explain and understand the politics of it? This book contributes to these questions both empirically and theoretically by concentrating on one of the least likely cases for welfare state transformation in Europe. It analyzes in detail how and why institutional change has taken Germany’s welfare state from a conservative towards a new work-first regime.
Christof Schiller introduces a novel analytical framework to make sense of the politics of welfare state transformation by providing the missing link: the capacity of the core executive over time. Examining the policy making process in labour market policy in the period between 1980 and 2010, he identifies three different policy making episodes and analyses their interaction with developments and changes in such policy areas as pension policy, family policy, labour law, tax policy and social assistance. The book advances existing efforts aimed at conceptualizing and measuring welfare state change by proposing a clear-cut conceptualization of social policy regime change and introduces a comprehensive analysis of the transformation of the welfare-work nexus between 1980 and 2010 in Germany.
This book will be of interest to students and scholars of social policy, comparative welfare state reform, welfare politics, government, governance, public policy, German politics, European politics, political economy, sociology and history.