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Reconceptualizing Development in the Global Information Age$
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Manuel Castells and Pekka Himanen

Print publication date: 2014

Print ISBN-13: 9780198716082

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: October 2014

DOI: 10.1093/acprof:oso/9780198716082.001.0001

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Toward the Welfare State 2.0? The Crisis and Renewal of the European Welfare State

Toward the Welfare State 2.0? The Crisis and Renewal of the European Welfare State

(p.89) Chapter 4 Toward the Welfare State 2.0? The Crisis and Renewal of the European Welfare State
Reconceptualizing Development in the Global Information Age

Manuel Castells

Isidora Chacon

Pekka Himanen

Oxford University Press

European societies have traditionally founded their social cohesion on well development welfare states, covering the basic needs of their citizens. However, the financial crisis of 2008 has led to a fiscal crisis that is calling into question the sustainability of the welfare state. Yet, the role of the welfare state in creating human resources for enhanced productivity in a knowledge economy requires in fact a more developed and efficient welfare state. On the condition of being a more productive and less bureaucratic welfare state. What is needed is a Welfare State 2.0, an informational welfare state that would take advantage of the opportunities for improvement offered by new information technologies in areas such as health, education, and e-government. The chapter examines empirically the advances towards that end in the European Union and identifies the social and institutional obstacles for the reform of the welfare state.

Keywords:   European Union, welfare state, economic crisis, informationalism, productivity, bureaucratic institutions, wellbeing society

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