This book challenges the underlying presupposition that regular employment is the royal road to inclusion. Drawing on original empirical research, it investigates the inclusionary and exclusionary potentials of different types of work, including activation programmes.
Active social policies in the EU makes an important contribution to the debates in this area by:
reporting on original international comparative research;
reflecting on and critically assessing current activating policies;
evaluating the consequences of these policies, as well as challenging the premises they are based on;
including the perspectives of service users in its analyses;
offering recommendations for the future design of activating policies.
The book will be invaluable for students, lecturers and researchers of social and labour market policies and policy makers. It is essential reading for those interested in issues of inclusion, activation and the role of types of work in promoting inclusion.
"This is a balanced book, revealing a sensitivity to complex issues. The concluding emphasis on the need to view social policy innovations such as activation from the perspectives and experiences of clients is salutary and needs to be more widely adopted in comparative social policy research." Social Development Issues
"There is currently a lot of political rhetoric about 'active social policies' in the EU. This book provides an empirical and analytical view of the complex issues of active employment and social policies in Europe. It is a most welcome contribution to ongoing debates. I warmly recommend it to policy makers, researchers and practitioners who wish to keep abreast of developments in the field." Matti Heikkilä, Deputy Director General of STAKES (National Research and Development Centre for Welfare and Health), Helsinki, Finland
Rik van Berkel is Researcher and Lecturer in Welfare State Studies, Faculty of Social Sciences, Utrecht University, the Netherlands. His main research areas are social and labour market policies and unemployment, on which he has published several books and articles.
Iver Hornemann Møller is Professor in Comparative Welfare Research, Centre for Social Integration and Differentiation in Copenhagen. He has published numerous books and articles on labour market and social policy issues.
Introduction ~ Rik van Berkel and Iver Hornemann Møller; The concept of inclusion/exclusion and the concept of work ~ Rik van Berkel, Iver Hornemann Møller and Colin C. Williams; The concept of activation ~ Rik van Berkel and Iver Hornemann Møller; The inclusive power of standard and non-standard work ~ Marisol García and Jan de Schampheleire; Inclusion through participation? Active social policies in the EU and empirical observations from case studies into types of work ~ Henning Hansen, Pedro Hespanha, Carlos Machado and Rik van Berkel; Patterns of exclusion/inclusion and people's strategies ~ Iver Hornemann Møller and Pedro Hespanha; Entrepreneurial activation: the Spanish Capitalisation of Unemployment Benefits programme ~ Aitor Gómez González; Orthodoxy and reflexivity in international comparative analysis ~ Ben Valkenburg and Jens Lind; Activation policies as reflexive social policies ~ Rik van Berkel and Maurice Roche.