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The Welfare State in EuropeEconomic and Social Perspectives$
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Pierre Pestieau and Mathieu Lefebvre

Print publication date: 2018

Print ISBN-13: 9780198817055

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: September 2018

DOI: 10.1093/oso/9780198817055.001.0001

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(p.184) 15 Conclusion
The Welfare State in Europe

Pierre Pestieau

Mathieu Lefebvre

Oxford University Press

This final chapter recaps the main problems facing the welfare states in Europe and insists on the need for reform. The acquired right issue but also the opposing views on what should be a welfare state too often tend to slow down the implementation of changes. Also, the two main challenges—coping with the digital revolution and fighting the social divide—are addressed. Faced with dramatic changes in how people work, social protection has to adapt. Reducing the gap between haves and have-nots will also be crucial for social policies and this may not be solved just by cash transfers.

Keywords:   acquired right, social divide, digital revolution, entrenched interest, social protection reforms, political support

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