Welfare state and social Europe
During the economic and financial crisis, fiscal positions across OECD countries deteriorated sharply. This column agues that population ageing and trends in social spending will further challenge the sustainability of fiscal balances. Research suggests that the scale of fiscal consolidation that will be needed to ensure long-term sustainability is large, but policymakers can look at the potential benefits of policy reform in mitigating budget pressures.
Amid the current economic slowdown there is renewed interest in what type of capitalism fosters growth and best improves welfare. This column argues Nordic-style capitalism may provide higher welfare but in an interconnected world, it may be the cut-throat US capitalism, with its extant inequalities, that makes possible the existence of more cuddly Nordic societies.
What does the distribution of wealth look like in an economy in which all households have identical skills and patience, but there is no redistribution? This column argues that without some redistributive mechanism – either explicit in the form of government tax or fiscal policies, or implicit in the form of limited intergenerational transfers – the wealth in the economy tends to concentrate at the top.
Western countries with ageing populations are in the grip a cruel irony. At the same time as having more old people than ever to support, youth unemployment is at its highest levels for a generation. As many of these countries go into elections this year, this column warns against populist politics that panders to the grey vote, and instead calls for leadership that puts the family first.
Twenty years ago, communist countries began their shift towards capitalism. What do we know now that we didn’t know then? Harvard's Andrei Shleifer, the Russian-born, American-trained economist, provides his answers and their relevance for contemporary policymakers.
Other Recent Articles:
- The changing face of disability insurance
- Is the US welfare state growing or declining?
- Does population ageing reduce productivity growth?
- Flexicurity: The Danish labour-market model in the Great Recession
- Migration and the welfare state
- Immigration and the welfare state: New evidence from the EU
- Indefinite work, temporary work, and informal work across Europe
- The ageing, crisis-prone welfare state is bad news for welfare migration
- A “one dollar, one vote” explanation of the welfare state
- Social policy in times of crisis
- Welfare to work: Sticks rather than carrots
- Ending the scourge of dual labour markets in Europe
- Explaining fertility trends in Russia
- The portfolio effects of pension reforms: Evidence from Italy
- Private delivery of public services
- Can income transfers to poor families help children?
- How should governments finance the demographic shift?
- Protecting poor children in the US
- The psychology of savings and investment
- Welfare state generosity and immigrants’ skills
- Fiscal consolidation: At what speed?Blanchard, Leigh
- Public debt and economic growth, one more timePanizza, Presbitero
- Escaping liquidity traps: Lessons from the UK’s 1930s escapeCrafts
- The lessons of the North Atlantic crisis for economic theory and policyStiglitz
- Helicopter money as a policy optionReichlin, Turner, Woodford
- A tale of two depressions: What do the new data tell us? February 2010 updateEichengreen, O’Rourke
- Educated in America: College graduates and high school dropoutsHeckman, LaFontaine
- Eurozone breakup would trigger the mother of all financial crisesEichengreen
- Debt, deleveraging, and the liquidity trap: A new modelKrugman
- Panic-driven austerity in the Eurozone and its implicationsDe Grauwe, Ji
Reichlin, Baldwin, 14 April 2013
Reichlin, Turner, Woodford
CEPR Policy Research
- The "Greatest" Carry Trade Ever? Understanding Eurozone Bank RisksAcharya, Steffen
- Political Credit Cycles: The Case of the Euro ZoneFernández-Villaverde, Garicano, Santos
- Winning by Losing: Incentive Incompatibility in Multiple QualifiersDagaev, Sonin
- Income and schoolingBrückner, Gradstein
- Monetary Policy and Rational Asset Price BubblesGalí
- How the EZ crisis is permanently changing EU institutionsMicossi
- WTO 2.0: Global governance of supply-chain tradeBaldwin
- Is US economic growth over? Faltering innovation confronts the six headwindsGordon
- The economic crisis: How to stimulate economies without increasing public debtWood
- Austerity: Too Much of a Good Thing?Corsetti