David Etherington provides bold and fresh perspectives on the link between welfare policy and employment relations as he assesses their fundamental impact on social inequalities.
Exploring how reforms, including Universal Credit, have reinforced employment and social insecurity, he assesses the role of NGOs, trade unions and policymakers in challenging this increasingly work-focused welfare agenda. Drawing on international and national case studies, the book reviews developments, including rising job insecurity, low pay and geographical inequalities, considered integral to neoliberal approaches to social spending.
Etherington sets out the possibilities and challenges of alternative approaches and progressive new paths for welfare, the labour market and social rights.
"In considering both the interrelationship between social welfare and industrial relations, and on the importance of exploring resistance to austerity, this book represents a long overdue and valuable contribution to ongoing debates in this field." Gerry Mooney, The Open University
David Etherington is Professor of Local and Regional Economic Development at Staffordshire University. His research focuses on the political economy of welfare reform and employment relations in the UK and Nordic countries.
Introduction: The crisis and austerity neoliberalism
Conceptualising austerity, welfare and employment relations
Embedding neoliberal austerity: From New Labour to the Conservative government
Resisting welfare reforms and work-first policies
Devolving welfare in Greater Manchester’s precarious economy
Sites of precarity: Resisting insecure work and work-first policies in Sheffield
Strategies for an inclusive labour market: Lessons from Denmark
Conclusions: A progressive agenda for challenging austerity