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The Universal Welfare State: Theory and the Case of Sweden

Bergh, Andreas. 2004. "The Universal Welfare State: Theory and the Case of Sweden." Political Studies 52:745-766.

In the existing literature on welfare state typologies, the concept of the universal welfare state is not defined precisely enough to allow for comparisons of universality over time and between countries. In this paper, I discuss some problems with the way the term 'the universal welfare state' has been used and I suggest possible solutions. Among other things, I propose that the term 'universality' be used to describe the provision of a specific welfare benefit independently of individual income and/or other individual characteristics. It should also be used to describe the coverage of welfare benefits rather than their size. Based on the theoretical discussion, a number of possible indicators of universality are applied to the case of Sweden in the 1990s. The conclusion is that, despite its economic crisis, universality in Sweden did not decrease.

« Government size and growth: accounting for economic freedom and globalization. | Main

Reader Comments (3)

har läst och kan bara konstatera att jag tänker och resonerar på samma sätt kring definitioner av välfärdsstaten och i synnerhet den svenska välfärdsstaten.

30 jan | Unregistered CommenterM Junestav

Lustigt, jag var nyss på din blogg som var trevlig. Dock undrar jag lite vilken typ av inspiration man får av Ola Larsmo och Noam Chomsky :-)

30 jan | Registered Commenterbergh

tja, Chomsky är ju en av de främsta lingvisterna (även om jag inte alltid hänger med på teorierna kring att språket skulle vara ett inbyggt "sinne" som inte påverkas av samhället...) och Ola Larsmo har skrivit en del riktigt bra prylar om nazismen. Tycker jag då.

30 jan | Unregistered CommenterM Junestav

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