Welfare State, Universalism and Diversity is a thought-provoking book dealing with key ideas, values and principles of social policies and asking what exactly is meant by universal benefits and policies? Is the time of post-war universalism over? Are universalism and diversity contradictory policy and theory framings?
This book revives the discussion on public social services and their redesign, with a focus on
services relating to care and the social inclusion of vulnerable groups, providing rich information
on the changes that occurred in the organisation and supply of public social services over the last
thirty years in different European places and service fields. Despite the persisting variety in
social service models, three shared trends emerge: public sector disengagement, ‘vertical
re-scaling’ of authority and ‘horizontal re-mix’ in the supply system. The consequences of such
changes are evaluated from different perspectives – governance, social and territorial cohesion,
labour market, gender – and are eventually deemed ‘disruptive’ in both economic and social terms.
The policy implications of the restructuring are also explored. This title will be Open Access on