Values and Social Policy in Comparative Perspective
Edited by Wim van Oorschot, Michael Opiekla and Birgit Pfau-Effinger
Chapter 3: Social Democratic Values in the European Welfare States
3. Social democratic values in the European welfare states Steinar Stjernø Key contributions to research on the welfare state direct the reader’s attention to the hegemonic and alternative sets of values that are reﬂected in the political cultures of diﬀering social and political alliances that created diﬀerent welfare regimes. Esping-Andersen (1990: 30) and Baldwin (1990: 33, 50–94) link the universal and redistributive Scandinavian welfare states to the alliance between the working class and farmers, and to risk-sharing and solidarity. Kersbergen (1995: 62–96) analyses how social Catholicism and its values inﬂuenced Christian democratic parties and their conceptions of the welfare state in diﬀerent nations (also Huber and Stephens, 2001: 144–62). This chapter seeks to depict the establishment and development of one aspect of the political culture of social democracy – its basic values – and the challenge of deducing political actions from those values. To identify these values, it is necessary to contrast them brieﬂy with the values of another type of party that has been a protagonist in the development of the welfare state in Europe – Christian democracy. It goes without saying that to analyse the relationship between the declared values of a political party and its political practice would be quite another task. APPROACH: FROM BASIC VALUES TO POLICY INSTRUMENTS Several authors have drawn attention to the values of socialism and social democracy. Marquand (1993: 53) points to an ethic that emphasized cooperation, community and solidarity. Thomson (2000: 9) suggests that what...
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