EU453 Half Unit
The Political Economy of European Welfare States
This information is for the 2023/24 session.
Prof Jonathan Hopkin
This course is available on the MSc in European and International Public Policy, MSc in European and International Public Policy (LSE and Bocconi), MSc in European and International Public Policy (LSE and Sciences Po), MSc in Human Resources and Organisations (International Employment Relations/CIPD), MSc in Political Economy of Europe, MSc in Political Economy of Europe (LSE and Fudan) , MSc in Political Economy of Europe (LSE and Sciences Po) and MSc in Political Science (Political Science and Political Economy). This course is available with permission as an outside option to students on other programmes where regulations permit.
This course has a limited number of places (it is controlled access) and demand is typically very high. Priority is given to students from the European Institute, so students from outside this programme may not get a place.
The aim of the course is to apply concepts of economics and political economy to social policies in European welfare states. The lectures establish the theoretical context, summarise the findings of quantitative case studies and discuss European experiences in the context of broader international experience. The seminars will further develop political-economic concepts, such as market and government failure, and apply them to qualitative case studies of welfare state arrangements in member states, considering in particular the role of social policy legislation and coordination at the EU level. The course will provide students with the conceptual and empirical background to enable them to answer questions such as: What does economic theory and political economy tell us about the design of welfare states? How do social policies in European welfare states reconcile equity and efficiency? What drives or stalls reform dynamics in member states? Is the EU gradually developing into a social union, through international mobility and the portability of social entitlements?
This course is delivered through a combination of lectures and seminars totalling a minimum of 25 hours across Winter Term. This course includes a reading week in Week 6 of Winter Term, and a review session will be held at the start of the Summer Term to prepare for the online assessment.
One individual formative essay of 2,000 words.
- Barr, N. (2020) The Economics of the Welfare State, 6th ed., Oxford: Oxford UP;
- Anderson, Karen (2015) Social policy in the European Union. Palgrave, 2015.
Essay (25%, 2000 words) in the WT.
Online assessment (75%) in the ST.
The online assessment for this course will be administered via Moodle. Questions will be made available at a set date/time and students will be given a set period in the ST to complete the answers to questions and upload their responses back into Moodle.
Department: European Institute
Total students 2022/23: 20
Average class size 2022/23: 10
Controlled access 2022/23: Yes
Lecture capture used 2022/23: Yes (LT)
Value: Half Unit
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Personal development skills
- Team working
- Application of numeracy skills