Title: Is employment of social risk groups the key to sustaining the European welfare regimes?

Authors: Kosta Josifidis, Novica Supic, Emilija Beker Pucar, Sladjana Srdic

Addresses: The Faculty of Economics Subotica, Department for European Economics and Business Novi Sad, University of Novi Sad, Dr Sime Milosevica 16, Novi Sad 21000, Serbia. ' The Faculty of Economics Subotica, Department for European Economics and Business Novi Sad, University of Novi Sad, Dr Sime Milosevica 16, Novi Sad 21000, Serbia. ' The Faculty of Economics Subotica, Department for European Economics and Business Novi Sad, University of Novi Sad, Dr Sime Milosevica 16, Novi Sad 21000, Serbia. ' The Faculty of Economics Subotica, Department for European Economics and Business Novi Sad, University of Novi Sad, Dr Sime Milosevica 16, Novi Sad 21000, Serbia

Abstract: The European welfare regimes face two sets of challenges. One internal, specific for the welfare state itself, and the other external, imposed by changing economic, political and economics conditions. The first challenge lies in the growing gap between the rigid welfare state design and flexible social demands. Due to their unpredictable nature, the second challenge has received more attention in comparative welfare state studies. The core of the actual welfare state crisis is allocated in the economic problems that can be synthesised as the unemployment problem. Following this logic, in this paper we promote the thesis that employment of social risk groups is the key for sustaining the European welfare regimes. When the level of employment of poverty risk groups is high and the level of unemployment is low, more people contribute to the welfare state and the less draw on it, making any given level of redistribution more sustainable. Along with theoretical consideration, we use the balanced panel of 14 EU countries from 1995 to 2006 in order to provide some evidences that could support this thesis empirically.

Keywords: welfare state; employment levels; panel analysis; social risk groups; Europe; welfare regimes; economic change; political change; economic conditions; flexible demands; social demands; economic problems; unemployment levels; poverty; EU; European Union; Sweden; Denmark; Finland; Holland; Netherlands; Belgium; Germany; France; Austria; Greece; Spain; Portugal; Italy; UK; United Kingdom; Ireland; income redistribution; economics; business research.

DOI: 10.1504/IJEBR.2011.043057

International Journal of Economics and Business Research, 2011 Vol.3 No.6, pp.623 - 640

Published online: 22 Apr 2015 *

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