The United Kingdom: more an economic than a social European

Julian Le Grand, Elias Mossialos and Morgan Long

in The Europeanisation of social protection

Published by Policy Press

Published in print September 2007 | ISBN: 9781847420206
Published online March 2012 | e-ISBN: 9781447303794 | DOI:
The United Kingdom: more an economic than a social European

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  • Comparative and Historical Sociology


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A country's social policy reflects its values, hence identifying its ideological framework is important in determining, understanding, and anticipating a country's position on social policy. In the United Kingdom, belief in the autonomy of the individual, the need to protect and assist the vulnerable, and a focus on economic growth to provide opportunity for all defines the role of government. It is through this framework that the UK considers domestic and European Community policies. This chapter discusses European social policy from the UK perspective. The first section discusses some of the fundamental differences between the European social model and the UK social model, and discusses how these stimulate and affect the UK's basic attitudes towards European policy. The second section describes the recent changes and reforms in the UK policy and then discusses how the European and other international models have influenced its changes and reforms. The last section summarises the national responses to EU social policy initiatives.

Keywords: social policy; United Kingdom; European Community policies; European social policy; European social model; UK social model; EU; social policy initiatives

Chapter.  7206 words.  Illustrated.

Subjects: Comparative and Historical Sociology

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