Social policy

Authored by: Claire Dupuy , Sophie Jacquot

The Routledge Handbook of European Public Policy

Print publication date:  November  2017
Online publication date:  November  2017

Print ISBN: 9781138927339
eBook ISBN: 9781315682723
Adobe ISBN:

10.4324/9781315682723-11

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Abstract

European social policy brings to the fore some of the issues which stand at the very root of the European integration project: What is the respective importance of the economic and social dimensions of this political project? How are EU autonomy and Member States sovereignty articulated? In the social domain, these questions have been answered differently in different time periods, according to varying combinations and conflicts between social democracy and liberalism on the one hand, and between federalism and preservation of national interests on the other. As it is, “Social Europe” is in a permanent tension between social progress and economic growth and European competitiveness, and between the will to develop a European level of action and the intent not to spill over an area which is at the heart of national identity.

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