Welfare States and Labour Market Change: What is the Possible Relation?

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Welfare states in many countries have, at least since the financial crisis, been under strong pressure from high levels of unemployment. We are expecting dramatic changes to labour markets. This article first presents the various arguments as to why there have or have not been substantial changes to labour markets, and whether there might be in the future, including arguments pro and con the possible impact thereof. The article thus provides a review of knowledge within the field, with a focus especially on how this can or might have an impact on welfare states, given the often strong connection between being on the labour market, access to a variety of welfare benefits and the ability to finance welfare states. It uses concepts such as under-employment and new forms of jobs as indicators of change. These changes implying, more than ever, that having a job does not necessarily entail that a person has a stable and solid income above the poverty level. Lastly, the article discusses whether some welfare states regime types are more prepared than others.
Original languageEnglish
JournalSocial Policy and Administration
Issue number2
Pages (from-to)389-403
Number of pages15
Publication statusPublished - 1 Mar 2017

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