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The European Social Model and the United States

[journal article]

Alber, Jens

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Abstract The notion of a European social model assumes that European societies have certain features in common that distinguish them from the United States. Analysing longitudinal data on the dimensions of state, economy and society three findings stand out: (1) for most indicators the range of variation within the European Union is bigger than the gap between Europe and the United States; (2) counter to the idea of policy convergence, differences in the developmental trajectories of countries with different institutional arrangements persist; (3) despite having extended welfare states similar to those of Continental European countries, Scandinavian nations have performed as well as the Anglo-Saxon countries in terms of employment and growth dynamics. Hence there are not only different social models in Europe but also different pathways to success.
Classification European Politics; Basic Research, General Concepts and History of Social Policy
Free Keywords European social model; policy trajectories; social indicators; US–European comparison; varieties of welfare capitalism;
Document language English
Publication Year 2006
Page/Pages p. 393-419
Journal European Union Politics, 7 (2006) 3
Status Postprint; peer reviewed
Licence PEER Licence Agreement (applicable only to documents from PEER project)