In the article, problems of the typology of the Welfare States are presented in the context of the European and Lithuanian situation. The more uniform European social model is questionable as, in the opinion of the author, it is possible to talk about a more unified European social model only on the basis of ideological values, because in the European reality there exist several, rather different, welfare models. The open coordination method in social administration is regarded by the author as the only one really unifying instrument in Europe, according to which it is possible to study the best practice of the leading countries. However, it is easier to study narrow-profile spheres, for instance, social work techniques or social services organization in municipalities, but not the structural adjustments. The institutional-redistributive model of the Nordic countries is considered by the author as the most progressive social model, although its critics maintain that the Nordic countries sacrifice economic efficiency for social efficiency. Much attention has been recently drawn by the problems of South-European countries, as some of them experience tremendous solvency and even bankruptcy threats. The author refers to his earlier works where he argues that the Lithuanian social policy model is slowly drifting to the liberal-marginal direction, but the latest State Social Insurance reform, generous maternity benefits and the increased demand for stationary social services (on the background of reduced non-stationary services) indicate that the movement towards a liberal model will occur not so rapidly as predicted earlier by the author. The system will maintain mixed features, and in some places they will be overleaping. The absence of a clear European social model makes the situation of the Eastern European and Lithuanian social system architects and reformers rather complicated. It is necessary to be guided by at least the most general normative model according to which it is possible to distinguish progressive and non-progressive social policies. The author suggests a normative model consisting of ten parts: a) community welfare, b) social inclusion, c) social solidarity, d) anomie prevention, e) social equality and diminishing poverty, f) decommodification, g) progressive taxation, h) "active", but not "passive", social policy, i) social empowerment, k) the democratic state as an institution. Such are the author's conclusions concerning the search for a more unified progressive European Welfare model.
|Number of pages||8|
|Publication status||Published - 2011|
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Sociology and Political Science