Politics of Segmentation: Party competition and social protection in Europe
Title: Politics of Segmentation: Party competition and social protection in Europe
Author: PICOT, Georg
Publisher: New York, Routledge
Citation: New York, Routledge, 2012, Routledge/EUI studies in the political economy of welfare, 15
When political parties make policy decisions they are influenced by the competition they face from other parties. This book examines how party competition and party systems affect reforms of social protection. Featuring a historical comparison of Italy and Germany post-1945, the book shows how a high number of parties and ideological polarisation lead to fragmented and unequal social benefits. Utilising a comparative approach, the author brings together two important issues in welfare state research that have been insufficiently investigated. Firstly, the complex influence of party competition on social policy-making, and second, how some social groups enjoy better social protection than others. Moving beyond the two countries of the case study, the book proposes an innovative framework for studying segmentation of social protection and applies this framework to a wider set of 15 advanced welfare states. Overall, this book draws together different strands of research on political parties and on welfare states, and introduces a new argument on how party politics shapes social policy.
Table of Contents:
--Introduction --Party competition and social protection --Comparing Italy and Germany --Segmentation of unemployment benefits in advanced welfare states today --Italy and Germany: policy divergence after World War II --Italy and Germany: changing trends during welfare state restructuring --Explaining labour market reforms in Italy and Germany --Italy and Germany: political driving forces behind different post-war paths --Germany: two political logics of segmenting reforms --Italy: party system change facilitating de-segmentation --Party competition and benefit segmentation across advanced welfare states --Conclusions and future research.