Families in the economic crisis: Mapping policy responses in five European Member States

Families in the economic crisis: Mapping policy responses in five European Member States

Since 2008, the financial and economic crisis has seriously challenged European Welfare States, particularly the countries of Southern and Eastern Europe. Among the welfare state reactions – such as austerity programmes or measures to alleviate the effects of the crisis on vulnerable groups and families – the area of family policy has received comparatively little attention in the literature (exceptions are the studies by Gauthier, 2010; Richardson, 2010). Against this background, the aim of the project “Families in the Economic Crisis: Mapping policy responses in five European Member States”, carried out by Eurofound in 2014-15, was to analyse the impact of the crisis on post-crisis family policy developments and the quality of life of disadvantaged families in Europe. The study focused on five countries selected to represent different economic situations and different policy traditions (Austria, United Kingdom, Portugal, Finland, Slovenia). For the five selected countries, the project conducted case studies of recent changes in family policies and family-relevant social policies and analysed how these developments affected the quality of life of families with children already in a disadvantaged situation, such as lone parents, large families and jobless families.

The final report presents the main findings of the study. It shows that the financial and economic crisis has challenged Welfare States to differing degrees. Countries with highly segmented labour markets, strained labour relations and weak welfare provisions appear to have been hit hardest. The effects of the crisis on families with children vary strongly, depending on a country’s family policy regime and post-crisis family policy responses.

 

Estatuto: 
Participant entity
Financed: 
Yes
Entidades: 
Eurofund - European Foundation for the Improvment of Living and Working Conditions
Keywords: 

Family policy, Impact of the economic crisis, European Welfare States, Disadvantaged families

Since 2008, the financial and economic crisis has seriously challenged European Welfare States, particularly the countries of Southern and Eastern Europe. Among the welfare state reactions – such as austerity programmes or measures to alleviate the effects of the crisis on vulnerable groups and families – the area of family policy has received comparatively little attention in the literature (exceptions are the studies by Gauthier, 2010; Richardson, 2010). Against this background, the aim of the project “Families in the Economic Crisis: Mapping policy responses in five European Member States”, carried out by Eurofound in 2014-15, was to analyse the impact of the crisis on post-crisis family policy developments and the quality of life of disadvantaged families in Europe. The study focused on five countries selected to represent different economic situations and different policy traditions (Austria, United Kingdom, Portugal, Finland, Slovenia). For the five selected countries, the project conducted case studies of recent changes in family policies and family-relevant social policies and analysed how these developments affected the quality of life of families with children already in a disadvantaged situation, such as lone parents, large families and jobless families.

The final report presents the main findings of the study. It shows that the financial and economic crisis has challenged Welfare States to differing degrees. Countries with highly segmented labour markets, strained labour relations and weak welfare provisions appear to have been hit hardest. The effects of the crisis on families with children vary strongly, depending on a country’s family policy regime and post-crisis family policy responses.

 

Objectivos: 
.
Parceria: 
International networ

FamCrisis

Coordenador 
Start Date: 
01/09/2014
End Date: 
31/08/2015
Duração: 
12 meses
Closed