Struggling for Better Social Potection: How Are Decision-Making Processes Evolving?

Tuesday, 12 July 2016: 09:00-10:30
Location: Hörsaal 11 (Juridicum)
RC19 Sociology of Poverty, Social Welfare and Social Policy (host committee)

Language: English

The process of globalization has tended to increase both risk and uncertainty among populations, be it at the level of perceptions or of sheer reality. In parallel, the last recession, even if affecting different world regions more or less intensely, has deepened many inequalities, produced new ones and made all of them more visible. Thus, pressures for swift reform of social protection policies have but increased while rapidly changing socio-economic situations are conducive to the upsurge of new demands and preferences. Such pressures for change and innovation have had the effect of moving political decision-making closer than ever to “muddling through” strategies. 
This session welcomes papers analyzing changes in policy-making strategies in the realm of social protection policies during the last few decades. Changes may include general impoverishment/enrichment of decision-making or, in other words, narrower or broader participation of different actors/social groups; upsurge of new (international, national, sub-national) participants; shifts of power and influence among relevant actors; predominance of unilateral decisions over consensus-seeking/negotiated outcomes; a more or less intense consideration of population opinions and preferences; and any other trajectories of change authors wish to ascertain and analyze.
Either longitudinal case studies or comparative analyses are of interest for this session, while any choice of theoretical and methodological approaches is acceptable. 
Session Organizers:
Ana Marta GUILLEN RODRIGUEZ, University of Oviedo, Spain and Emmanuele PAVOLINI, Macerata University, Italy