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Social Policy Review 31Analysis and Debate in Social Policy, 2019$
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Elke Heins, James Rees, and Catherine Needham

Print publication date: 2019

Print ISBN-13: 9781447343981

Published to Policy Press Scholarship Online: January 2020

DOI: 10.1332/policypress/9781447343981.001.0001

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PRINTED FROM POLICY PRESS SCHOLARSHIP ONLINE (www.policypress.universitypressscholarship.com). (c) Copyright Policy Press, 2022. All Rights Reserved. An individual user may print out a PDF of a single chapter of a monograph in PPSO for personal use.date: 28 May 2022

From welfare state to participation society: austerity, ideology or rhetoric?

From welfare state to participation society: austerity, ideology or rhetoric?

(p.101) 5 From welfare state to participation society: austerity, ideology or rhetoric?
Social Policy Review 31

Menno Fenger

Babs Broekema

, Elke Heins, Catherine Needham, James Rees
Policy Press

In his first annual speech to parliament in 2013, Dutch King Willem-Alexander announced the end of the era of the welfare state and proclaimed the Participation Society. He stated that the process of individualization, combined with the need to reduce the government's budget deficit leads “to a slow transition of the classical welfare state into a participation society. Everyone who is able to do so, is asked to take responsibility for his or her own life and environment”. This shift towards a participation society is not unique for the Netherlands. Many European countries have experience reforms of their welfare states that limit the responsibility of the state and increases the responsibility of individual citizens. This chapter discusses the backgrounds of Dutch Participation Society in the political discourse, and analyses how and to what extent the ideas of the Participation Society have actually been translated into the content of social policies, their implementation and their consequences.

Keywords:   Participation Society, Big Society, welfare state, responsibility, crowding out

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