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The universal welfare state: Theory and the case of Sweden

Bergh, Andreas LU (2004) In Political Studies 52(4). p.745-766
Abstract
In the existing literature on welfare state typologies, the concept of the universal welfare state is not defined precisely enough to allow for comparisons of universality over time and between countries. In this paper, I discuss some problems with the way the term 'the universal welfare state' has been used and I suggest possible solutions. Among other things, I propose that the term 'universality' be used to describe the provision of a specific welfare benefit independently of individual income and/or other individual characteristics. It should also be used to describe the coverage of welfare benefits rather than their size. Based on the theoretical discussion, a number of possible indicators of universality are applied to the case of... (More)
In the existing literature on welfare state typologies, the concept of the universal welfare state is not defined precisely enough to allow for comparisons of universality over time and between countries. In this paper, I discuss some problems with the way the term 'the universal welfare state' has been used and I suggest possible solutions. Among other things, I propose that the term 'universality' be used to describe the provision of a specific welfare benefit independently of individual income and/or other individual characteristics. It should also be used to describe the coverage of welfare benefits rather than their size. Based on the theoretical discussion, a number of possible indicators of universality are applied to the case of Sweden in the 1990s. The conclusion is that, despite its economic crisis, universality in Sweden did not decrease. (Less)
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author
organization
publishing date
type
Contribution to journal
publication status
published
subject
in
Political Studies
volume
52
issue
4
pages
745 - 766
publisher
Wiley-Blackwell
external identifiers
  • wos:000225748400006
  • scopus:11144298662
ISSN
0032-3217
DOI
10.1111/j.1467-9248.2004.00506.x
language
English
LU publication?
yes
id
5cbf7b37-20cd-4b4a-b180-fa17a55aff19 (old id 897759)
date added to LUP
2008-01-10 11:27:00
date last changed
2017-11-12 03:19:16
@article{5cbf7b37-20cd-4b4a-b180-fa17a55aff19,
  abstract     = {In the existing literature on welfare state typologies, the concept of the universal welfare state is not defined precisely enough to allow for comparisons of universality over time and between countries. In this paper, I discuss some problems with the way the term 'the universal welfare state' has been used and I suggest possible solutions. Among other things, I propose that the term 'universality' be used to describe the provision of a specific welfare benefit independently of individual income and/or other individual characteristics. It should also be used to describe the coverage of welfare benefits rather than their size. Based on the theoretical discussion, a number of possible indicators of universality are applied to the case of Sweden in the 1990s. The conclusion is that, despite its economic crisis, universality in Sweden did not decrease.},
  author       = {Bergh, Andreas},
  issn         = {0032-3217},
  language     = {eng},
  number       = {4},
  pages        = {745--766},
  publisher    = {Wiley-Blackwell},
  series       = {Political Studies},
  title        = {The universal welfare state: Theory and the case of Sweden},
  url          = {http://dx.doi.org/10.1111/j.1467-9248.2004.00506.x},
  volume       = {52},
  year         = {2004},
}