The call for paper for the 9th ESPAnet Italy Conference "Models of Welfare, Models of Capitalism" (Macerata, 22-24 September 2016) is now open.
Session 13 - Different degrees of contentiousness? The politics of minimum income schemes in Europe and beyond will be held by Matteo Jessoula (Univeristy of Milan & ESPN) and Paolo Graziano (University of Padua & OSE)
Traditionally representing a key feature of Liberal welfare regimes and the social protection “floor” in Socialdemocratic welfare states, means-tested minimum income schemes (MIS) have been introduced and then expanded in Southern and Eastern European countries, as well as in other world areas – e.g. Latin America, China, etc. - in the last two decades. A broad strand of literature focusing on such last resort anti-poverty schemes has also flourished as a result of the increased attention of scholars working on welfare state development. In these works, the analytical focus has mostly been on policy developments and governance issues either at national level or in comparative perspective.
The political dimension of minimum income schemes has been, however, much less explored. Also in light of the “weak politics”– i.e. the generally limited scope for “credit claiming”in this policy sector due to low political relevance of would be beneficiaries (Madama and Jessoula 2015) – the introduction of these schemes has often been interpreted as the result of policy learning and/or mimesis-diffusion processes. By contrast, some recent contributions have argued that politics substantially matters also in this policy field (Clegg 2014; Lalioti 2016), also suggesting that the degree of contentiousness may vary remarkably across the different countries (Jessoula et al. 2014, Natili 2015).
Following this line of research, this session welcomes papers which analyze – theoretically or empirically - the political economy of non-contributory (generally, means-tested) minimum income schemes. The deadline for submitting an abstract is May 31, 2016.