Welfare State Change: Towards a Third Way?

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Its signature component was the introduction of the Universal Credit UC , presently being rolled out and due to be in place by Instead, uniform national provision was replaced with local and varied measures, which in its decentralised emphasis mirrored how Americanisation of welfare increasingly operates through states, counties and municipalities. While the logic of a unified benefit structure is not intrinsically related to either conditionality or cuts, it has proven to be vulnerable to both.

Indeed, since its initial introduction, the Conservative government has tightened UC conditionality and introduced a steeper withdrawal rate than in its earliest plans, as well as switching from weekly to monthly benefit payments and a longer waiting period. The new sanctioning regime around UC is also steep, with even working claimants liable to sanctions if they do not meet minimum income thresholds equivalent to 35 hours at minimum wages. As a consequence, working age benefit recipients are subject to greater conditionality—as all six previous benefits are now conditional for large portions of recipients—and the scope of conditionality is more intensive, with a most serious infraction resulting in a loss of upwards of half of all benefits.

There are various tiers, from those with no conditionality such as the severely disabled , those required to do work focused interviews but not full search such as lone parents , those required to do training and preparation but not a full search, and those subject to full conditionality. The result is transformative, if still not completely grasped by commentators. For both childless adults and those with families, sanctioning in UC is already occurring, and in some regions of the country, sanctioning affects large portions of the population.

Hood and T.

The Third Way and the politics of community in: The Third Way and beyond

These cuts to benefits have taken place against the same structural weaknesses in the labour market observed in earlier periods. Why did the Third Way policies prove an unstable equilibrium? First, until very recently, public opinion was largely supportive of sanctioning and limited benefits. The public, in many ways, followed elites. The British Social Attitudes survey shows that by the s, 50—60 per cent of voters polled agreed that benefits were too high compared with 25 per cent in early s.

Second, while scholars debate the relative role of economic and cultural motives in UKIP support and Brexit voting, both are likely at play. The structural economic weaknesses and vulnerability to trade shocks in parts of the country are strongly correlated with Brexit voting patterns. Colatone and P.

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At the same time, a large number of voters had long expressed concerns about immigration and low political responsiveness from elites. Goodwin and R. Ford, Revolt of the Right, Abingdon, Routledge, Already the Brexit vote has reduced the movement of EU citizens to the UK and has prompted others to exit.

The electoral and political effects of this targeted focus on migration includes the virtual disappearance of UKIP, but not necessarily the underlying motivations to restrict benefits to foreigners. Will Brexit Britain continue to follow this Americanisation trajectory? Perhaps not. First, public opinion may be shifting against it for a number of reasons.

These shifts in public attitudes combine with other forms of mobilisation. First, unions have consistently criticised the UC programme for pushing more households, especially child households, into poverty.

Second, elite thinking on conditionality may also be shifting. In both cases, questions about sustained investment in not just skills, but infrastructure are entering the political agenda. While not fully operational, the UC is sparking concern over its harsh structure and sanctioning. At the same time, the Conservative government has moved towards increasing the minimum wage and discussing the possibility of greater public investment to combat low pay.

The shape of Brexit and future governments remains uncertain. Whether conditional and punitive benefits continue to define the approach is a central question going forward. Volume 90 , Issue 1.

Making markets in the welfare system

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The Political Quarterly Volume 90, Issue 1. Original Article Free Access. Jane Gingrich Search for more papers by this author. Desmond King Search for more papers by this author. Tools Request permission Export citation Add to favorites Track citation. Share Give access Share full text access. Share full text access. Please review our Terms and Conditions of Use and check box below to share full-text version of article. Abstract Will the British welfare state revert to an Americanisation trajectory or retain features of the European model after April ?

The discussion concludes by examining whether there is space for a new European model in the UK. Americanisation or Europeanisation: a blurring of models or stark choice?

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The reshaping of working age welfare from Thatcher to Blair Welfare reform emerged prominently on the agenda under the Conservative Thatcher and Major governments. Figure 1 Open in figure viewer PowerPoint. The employment protection legislation data comes from the OECD EPL database, version 1, and combines the component parts for individuals, collective dismissals and temporary workers.

Figure 2 Open in figure viewer PowerPoint. Figure 3 Open in figure viewer PowerPoint. A new Third Way after Brexit? Figure 4 Open in figure viewer PowerPoint. Volume 90 , Issue 1 January—March Pages Figures Related Information. Close Figure Viewer. Browse All Figures Return to Figure. Previous Figure Next Figure. Email or Customer ID. Forgot password? Old Password. New Password. Therefore, I do three things.

I do this to show that the policy New Labour implemented was caused by a coherent set of ideas. This is important to see how the Labour Party changed its policy agenda. Thirdly, I show the reasons the Labour Party caused in develop this policy strategy chapter three. I analyse why the Labour Party modernised itself. Therefore, we need to know the surrounding conditions of the Labour Party. The reasons to modernise can lie within the party or within the society. To describe the situation of the Labour Party properly I work with some statists, polls and political calculations.

On the one hand it is an ideological coherent set of ideas, as we will see and on the other hand it is an electoral strategy. I will work out, whether Labour could implement the policy agenda they gave themselves. There is an unanswered question. This question is whether the Labour Party really did need to modernise to come back into office. A complete outline about this topic is not possible within this work, but if we keep in mind that this modernisation caused a lot of costs to the party and changed the traditions within the party completely, this question is with no doubt crucial.

I gave a brief outline why I am in doubt that these modernisations really mattered. In the conclusion I summarise the results of the earlier chapters. By analysing the changes in the policy agenda of the Labour Party we need to find some criteria. In showing this, I will indicate important changes within the policy agenda.

Ideology is a widely discussed term within political science. In writing this, he is able to classify his own views as scientific [Heywood, p 6]. I present two different definitions of ideology, even in knowing that it is impossible to define it comprehensively. Myth is fundamental, because it simplifies the reality, needed to describe and communicated the reality. This dimension deals with emotions, which are important to appeal people. Within this context we need to distinguish between open and closed belief systems.

Open belief systems are able to admit new circumstances, emotions and information. The ideology can adapt these new circumstances. A closed belief system is static and cannot change itself, while the situation is changing. In extraordinary time open belief system can affect the people emotions even there are changes peoples are afraid of [Reja, 7]. To embody the normative elements, an ideology announces some evaluated facts and to prove itself as true or to prove the existing order as wrong [Rejai, ].

Ideologies state out a specific program, which steps to go, to reach the aim of the ideology. So they set out a system of beliefs, what is going to be reached and mention the activity to go further to it [Rejai, 9]. Ideologies need a mass base. They need the combinations between elite project and mass mobilisation to function [Rejai, 10].

The myths and values of ideology are communicated through symbols in a simplified, economical, and efficient manner. Ideological beliefs are more or less coherent, more or less articulate, more or less open to new evidence and information.

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Ideologies have a high potential for mass mobilization, manipulation, and control; in that sense, they are mobilized belief systems. Ideologies include beliefs and normative judgement about the current society. Ideologies therefore have a powerful emotional or affective character, as they are able to express hopes and fear, sympathies and hatreds. They deal with abstract ideas, principles and values that are the crucial and they are mostly formulated from a refusal of the existing order.

Heywood describes this as the idea-based part of the ideology. Heywood describes this as the action-orientated part of an ideology. An ideology needs a broad political movement, to engage in popular mobilisation and to struggle for power [ibid. In fact, both definitions summarises quite similar elemental facts of an ideology.

The definition of Heywood is more practicable to prove the elements of ideology, because they are quite concrete. In some points it is hard to distinguish between the description of the status quo and the vision of a good society. In almost the same manner it is hard to distinguish between the vision and the theory of political change. The borders in the upcoming three chapters sometimes blurred, if this assists the reading. It restricts itself from Old Labour as well, as it was formulated in opposition to limit itself from former politics of Labour governments and the ruling Thatcher and Major government.

It uses the negative way to show, what the existing order is no more. Giddens wants to formulate an answer to the changes going on in the world. He wants to propose the social democratic parties for these changes and he wants to concentrate the discussion about social democratic parties in the Western World since the s.

Welfare State Change – Towards a Third Way?

Ideologies without a real possibility that can be achieved lost their capacity to inspire. In his view these main ideologies, such as socialism, have no real background; that is why social democracy needs to be changed. He wants to formulate an ideology that really can be achieved, that can inspire the people. They should accept the status quo and should not addict to the time the curtain wall still existed.

In Giddens view Britain was less hierarchical in the s and more permissive than ever [Fielding, 79]. Therefore class- orientated politics cannot be successfully anymore. For example, people make their choices individually on their own and do not depend on decisions the trade union suggests to them. Especially for the Labour Party and its link to the unions this is a barrier.

Labour needed the unions to finance them and needed the endorsement the unions gave to their members to vote for Labour. When people make their decisions individual the membership in the union or in the working class is no more a certainty they vote Labour [5]. This is the new basis New Labour has to give answers to. Anthony Giddens criticises the adherence of Old Labour on parts of their ideology even the world around had fully changed.

The welfare system Old Labour nourished in the status quo was a concept designed for a full-employment no one can guarantee anymore. There are other changes the welfare system was originally not drafted for. The welfare state was designed for the role model of the husband being the breadwinner working in a homogeneous labour market with mostly manual workers in a dominance of mass production.

This is not the reality in the s or s anymore [Giddens, ].

There are a lot more women in the labour market, a lot of manual workplaces were fallen victim to the structural economic change and the mass production mostly left the United Kingdom.