United in Diversity?: Comparing Social Models in Europe and America

Hardcover | October 21, 2009

byJens AlberEditorNeil Gilbert

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Since the advent of the European Union, politicians have increasingly emphasized the notion of a European social model as an alternative to the American form of market capitalism, which is seen as promoting economic growth without regard for solidarity and social progress. As this politicaldiscourse has advanced, social scientists and academic policy analysts have raised questions concerning the extent to which the E.U. and U.S. social models exist outside the minds of diplomats and politicians seeking to stitch together a common identity. How much unity is there still within Europeafter the Eastern enlargements have considerably increased economic and cultural diversity? To whatever extent one might discern a distinct set of commonalities that represent the core of a European approach, how different are the European characteristics of social, economic, and political life fromthose of America?Addressing these issues, this book systematically analyzes how much European countries and the United States have in common and how much variation we find within the enlarged European Union in eight central spheres of socio-economic and political life: employment, equality/mobility, educationalopportunity, integration of immigrants, democratic functioning, political participation, rights to welfare, and levels of public spending. Drawing on empirical analyses by U.S. and European scholars who represent multi-disciplinary backgrounds, each of these topics is put under scrutiny. The resultsof this study illuminate points of convergence and divergence as seen from the perspectives of scholars from both sides of the Atlantic.

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Since the advent of the European Union, politicians have increasingly emphasized the notion of a European social model as an alternative to the American form of market capitalism, which is seen as promoting economic growth without regard for solidarity and social progress. As this politicaldiscourse has advanced, social scientists and ...

Jens Alber is Professor of Sociology at the Free University of Berlin and Director of the Research Unit Inequality and Social Integration at the Social Science Center Berlin. Neil Gilbert is Chernin Professor of Social Welfare at the School of Social Welfare, University of California at Berkeley, faculty leader of the Center for Compa...

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Format:HardcoverDimensions:464 pages, 6.1 × 9.29 × 1.3 inPublished:October 21, 2009Publisher:Oxford University PressLanguage:English

The following ISBNs are associated with this title:

ISBN - 10:0195376633

ISBN - 13:9780195376630

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Table of Contents

Jens Alber and Neil Gilbert: IntroductionPart I: State: Structure and PolicySection I. Democratic Functioning1. Stein Ringen: Democratic Quality in America and Europe2. John Samples: Liberalism and Democracy in America TodaySection II. Political Integration3. Jens Alber and Ulrich Kohler: The Inequality of Electoral Participation in Europe and America and the Politically Integrative Functions of the Welfare State4. Michael P. McDonald: Income Inequality and Participation in United States ElectionsSection III. Patterns of Public Expenditure5. Francis G. Castles: Patterns of State Expenditure in Europe and America6. Neil Gilbert: Comparative Analyses of Stateness and State Action: What Can We Learn From Patterns of Expenditure?Section IV. Citizenship and Welfare7. Chiara Saraceno: Concepts and Practices of Social Citizenship in Europe: The Case of Poverty and Income Support for the Poor8. Rebecca M. Blank: The New American Model of Work-Conditioned Public SupportPart 2: Society: Conditions and OutcomesSection V. The Goal of Full Employment9. Werner Eichhorst and Anton Hemerijck: Welfare and Employment: a European Dilemma?10. Richard B. Freeman: Fulfilling the Ballyhoo of a Peak Economy? The US Economic ModelSection VI. Inequality and Mobility11. Markus Gangl: Egalitarianism versus Economic Dynamics? An Empirical Assessment of the Friedman Conjecture12. Richard V. Burkhauser and Kenneth A. Couch: Are United States Inequality and Mobility Trends in the European Union's Future?Section VII. Educational Opportunity13. Jutta Allmendinger, Christian Ebner, and Rita Nikolai: Education in Europe and the Lisbon Benchmarks14. Patricia Maloney and Karl Ulrich Mayer: The U.S. Educational System: Can it be a Model for Europe?Section VIII. Immigrant Integration15. Frank Kalter and Nadia Granato: Different Countries, Different Groups, Same Mechanisms? The Structural Assimilation of the Second Generation in Europe (D, F, GB) and the U.S.16. Charles Hirschman, Anthony Daniel Perez: Immigration and Nativism in the United States and Europe: Demography and Globalization versus the Nation-StateSection IX. Conclusion17. Jens Alber, Neil Gilbert: The Epistemology of Comparative Analyses: What Do We Know?