Choosing the Path of Austerity: How Policy Coalitions Shape Welfare-policy Choices in Periods of Fiscal Consolidation

Armingeon, Klaus; Guthmann, Kai; Weisstanner, David (1 July 2014). Choosing the Path of Austerity: How Policy Coalitions Shape Welfare-policy Choices in Periods of Fiscal Consolidation (Unpublished). In: XXVI Villa Mondragone International Economic Seminar. Rom. 01.-03.07.2014.

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In general, fiscal adjustments are associated with significant reductions in social spending. Hence, the welfare state is not spared from austerity. Because the welfare state is still central to party competition, this is electorally risky. The paper addresses the following questions: Do left parties differ from their centrist and rightist competitors in the design of austerity measures? And does government type has an impact on the extent to which austerity policies rely on social spending cuts? By comparing 17 OECD countries between 1982 and 2009 we show that if governments embark on a path to austerity, their ideology does not have a significant effect on the magnitude of welfare state retrenchment. However, if major opposition parties and interest groups rally against social spending cuts, a broad pro-reform coalition is a crucial precondition for large fiscal consolidation programs to rely on substantial cuts to social security.

Item Type:

Conference or Workshop Item (Speech)

Division/Institute:

03 Faculty of Business, Economics and Social Sciences > Social Sciences > Institute of Political Science

UniBE Contributor:

Armingeon, Klaus; Guthmann, Kai and Weisstanner, David

Subjects:

300 Social sciences, sociology & anthropology > 320 Political science

Language:

English

Submitter:

Beatrice Romann

Date Deposited:

22 Oct 2014 13:46

Last Modified:

22 Oct 2014 13:46

BORIS DOI:

10.7892/boris.59330

URI:

https://boris.unibe.ch/id/eprint/59330

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