Chapter

Towards German liberalism and British social democracy: the evolution of two public occupational pension regimes from 1945 to 2009

Traute Meyer and Paul Bridgen

in Converging Worlds of Welfare?

Published in print May 2011 | ISBN: 9780199584499
Published online September 2011 | e-ISBN: 9780191728792 | DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.1093/acprof:oso/9780199584499.003.0009

Series: Creating Sustainable Growth In Europe

Towards German liberalism and British social democracy: the evolution of two public occupational pension regimes from 1945 to 2009

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This chapter assesses the evolution of public and occupational pension regimes in Britain and Germany from 1945 to 2009 in relation to the conservative and liberal welfare state regimes and the coordinated and liberal market economies. It argues that the liberal label has never appropriately captured the nature of British pensions, because it overlooked the strong role of the state as regulator and employer. Regarding Germany, the conservative label characterizes well the situation between 1957 and 2000. After that, the retrenchment of the statutory pension and increased state support of voluntary savings have undermined status preservation more than expected by theorists of coordinated capitalism. Both systems have therefore developed in opposing directions, Britain towards social democracy and Germany towards liberalism.

Keywords: history of pension provision; liberal welfare; conservative pension regime; public-sector pensions

Chapter.  9135 words.  Illustrated.

Subjects: Economic Development and Growth

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