SOS Cohesion: Social Services, welfare, state and places

//SOS Cohesion: Social Services, welfare, state and places
SOS Cohesion: Social Services, welfare, state and places 2015-02-16T14:46:54+00:00

Funding Program: COST Action European Union

Main Researcher: Marisol García

Management Committee representative: Marisol García

WG2 Leaders : Marisol García, Anna Escobedo, Cristina Rimbau

Local Workshop coordinator: Julie De Weerdt

WGSC Meeting Barcelona management support: Marc Pradel, Sergio Sanchez, Julie De Weerdt

Short Term Scientific Missions: Ana Belen Cano Hila, Santiago Eizaguirre, Marc Pradel, Sergio Sanchez, Cristina Rimbau

International Coordinator: Flavia Martinelli

The restructuring of social services in Europe and its impact on social and territorial cohesion and governance

In the last 20 years social services have experienced significant restructuring throughout Europe, involving cuts in public funding, devolution (from central to local governments), and externalisation (from public to private providers). Among the reasons for such changes have been stressed the fiscal crisis of the State (on the supply side) and the need to ensure greater efficiency, wider consumer choice and more democratic governance (on the demand side).

Although relevant research is available on such processes, the recent global financial crisis and the awareness that, among services of general interest, social services are a major vehicle of social and territorial cohesion have brought social services back on the EU agenda. This Action seeks to involve institutions that are already carrying out research on these themes, in different nations, from different disciplinary points of view, and with different emphases, to jointly assess the effects of the restructuring processes, from 5 points of view:

  1. efficiency (cost/quality)
  2. democratic governance
  3. social and territorial cohesion
  4. labour
  5. gender

The COST Action provides a structured comparative framework to share and valorise existing knowledge with a view to:

  1. disseminating findings at the local and international scale
  2. identifying inputs for a European social policy platform.

More information on the project here