Chapter

Do we all (dis)like the same welfare state? Configurations of public support for the welfare state in comparative perspective

Mads Meier JæGer

in Changing Social Equality

Published by Policy Press

Published in print November 2011 | ISBN: 9781847426604
Published online May 2012 | e-ISBN: 9781447305583 | DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.1332/policypress/9781847426604.003.0003
Do we all (dis)like the same welfare state? Configurations of public support for the welfare state in comparative perspective

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Does equality in outcomes lead to a preference for equality? This chapter introduces a new approach to study popular support for the welfare state that focuses on qualitative different configurations of welfare state attitudes rather than purely quantitative attitudinal differences dominant in previous research. It identifies three types of latent welfare attitudes. The results suggest that people's welfare attitudes cluster into well-defined groups based on the redistribution and deservingness dimensions. Although the Nordic countries are not in the lead in terms of having a passion for equality, the support of their populations seems higher than demonstrated in other studies. Finally, country-specific factors rather than welfare regime factors drive changes in public opinion over time.

Keywords: welfare state; latent class analysis; public opinion; equality in outcomes

Chapter.  9242 words.  Illustrated.

Subjects: Social Stratification, Inequality, and Mobility

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