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Welfare to Work in Contemporary European Welfare StatesLegal, Sociological and Philosophical Perspectives on Justice and Domination$
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Anja Eleveld, Thomas Kampen, and Josien Arts

Print publication date: 2020

Print ISBN-13: 9781447340010

Published to Policy Press Scholarship Online: September 2020

DOI: 10.1332/policypress/9781447340010.001.0001

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The silent expansion of welfare to work policies: how policies are enhanced through the use of categorizations, evidence-based knowledge and self-governance

The silent expansion of welfare to work policies: how policies are enhanced through the use of categorizations, evidence-based knowledge and self-governance

Chapter:
(p.163) 8 The silent expansion of welfare to work policies: how policies are enhanced through the use of categorizations, evidence-based knowledge and self-governance
Source:
Welfare to Work in Contemporary European Welfare States
Author(s):

Mathias H. Nielsen

Sophie Danneris

Niklas A. Andersen

Publisher:
Policy Press
DOI:10.1332/policypress/9781447340010.003.0008

The chapter explores how Danish WTW policies have recently been implemented and extended while to a large degree avoiding the hazards of public justification. The chapter investigates three cases, which exemplify three different ways to expand the scope of WTW polices, without them having to be publicly justified. The first case digs into classification processes where the work capability of Danish social assistance claimants is assessed. It shows how incremental changes of such processes have formed a system where more and more claimants are deemed capable of working – and therefore legitimate targets of harsher demands and sanctions. The second case explores how the political quest for evidence-based employment policies comes with an inherent bias: ‘Evidence’ is constructed in ways that clearly favour work first policies. The third case investigates how the municipal welfare offices’ autonomy to try out new and innovative activation programs, is currently being restructured by subtle changes that increase the incentives to take up activations programs that support WTW strategies.

Keywords:   Activation, Unemployment, Workfare, Social assistance, Michel Foucault, Classification, Evidence based knowledge

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