This second edition of a widely-respected textbook is one of the few resources available to provide an overview of human need, as a key concept in the social sciences. Taking an approach encompassing both global North and South, this accessible and engaging book models existing practical and theoretical approaches to human need while also proposing a radical alternative.
Incorporating crucial current debates and illustrations, the author explores:
• distinctions between different types and levels of need;
• how different approaches are reflected in different sorts of policy goals;
• debates about the relationship between needs, rights and welfare;
• contested thinking about needs in relation to caring, disadvantage and humanity.
Fully revised and updated, this new edition pays due regard to the shifting nature of welfare ideologies and welfare regimes. Offering essential insights for students of social policy, it will also be of interest to other social science disciplines, policy makers and political activists.
“In this new edition, Hartley Dean again demonstrates his mastery of the subject and his ability to analyse complex issues concerning the nature of human need and its relationship with rights and welfare. His book will be the standard reference work on human need for many years to come.” James Midgley, University of California
“A truly comprehensive account of human need and an original value-based argument for a new politics of need – indispensable reading across the social sciences.” David Taylor, University of Brighton
"This book is a welcome addition to the literature and a very useful resource for teaching that fills an important gap." Gillian Brock, University of Auckland
“Venturing beyond a standard revision, this second edition of Dean’s textbook develops a novel radical humanist vision of need and outlines a ‘needs-first’ ethic. Of interest to a wider audience beyond social policy.” Ian Gough, The London School of Economics and Political Science
Hartley Dean is Professor of Social Policy at the London School of Economics and Political Science.
Part One: Understandings and concepts
The needs of humanity
The ‘thin’ and the ‘thick’ of need and needing
Needs in theory
Needs in practice
Human need and social policy
Part Two: Implications and debates
Unmet needs and social disadvantage
Articulating needs as rights
The politics of human need