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Ideas and Policy: The European Union considers social policy futures. ACES Cases No. 2010.2

Jenson, Jane (2010) Ideas and Policy: The European Union considers social policy futures. ACES Cases No. 2010.2. UNSPECIFIED.

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    The European Union’s social policy perspectives have changed quite dramatically over the last several decades. Now EU’s social policy discourse often promises to “invest in people,” sometimes “to invest in children,” and always to pay particular attention to youth. This paper argues that the tools of historical institutionalism can lead to understanding the ideational roots of this social investment perspective so distant from the “European social model.” Coming out of social movements, and with collective identities shaped both by those movement roots and national experiences, activists have effectively focused their practices on altering the social representations of European social solidarity through their interest group interventions, their participation in policy forums, and their mobilization within civil society at the European and sub-European levels. They have been able to make common cause with several epistemic communities that themselves revamped their ideas in the face of new institutional constraints, in order to advance their interests in promoting particular directions for social policy. The paper documents that “ideas” are not a variable and discourse “sometimes important” but that the ideas carried by movements and in epistemic communities are integral to the very definition of their interests that they promote within and with institutions.

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    Item Type: Other
    Subjects for non-EU documents: EU policies and themes > Policies & related activities > social policy > general
    Subjects for EU documents: UNSPECIFIED
    EU Series and Periodicals: UNSPECIFIED
    EU Annual Reports: UNSPECIFIED
    Series: Series > American Consortium on European Union Studies > ACES Cases
    Depositing User: Phil Wilkin
    Official EU Document: No
    Language: English
    Date Deposited: 12 Jan 2015 13:25
    Number of Pages: 34
    Last Modified: 12 Jan 2015 13:25

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