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Critically assess whether European Union social policy can be characterised as Europeanised. Provide evidence and examples drawn from E. U. social policy areas to support your asse

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The aim of this essay is to critically asses whether European union social policy can be characterised as Europeanised. This paper consists of three main chapters. The first chapter includes definition of key words, which are underlying for this essay. The next part briefly mentions basic European types of welfare states. The third chapter deals with areas of social policy, level of Europeanization in selected areas and shows examples of principles and concepts of European social policy in each area. The last part includes a conclusion, that summarizes main ideas of this paper.

1. Key words

This chapter deals with definition of key words. In my opinion, the basic term for this paper are: european social policy, europeanization, harmonisation, mutual recognition, cohesion and convergence.

European social policy

Before we can talk European social policy we have to define what we mean by social policy in general. Kleinman (2002, p. 1) offers a broad definition of social policy: ,, government interventions that are designed to affect individua behaviour or command over resources or to influence the economic system in order to shape society in some way". According to author (Kleinman, 2002, p. 1) this definition includes all policies that are designed to prevent, mitigate or alleviate the social consequences of economic developments. European Union social policy belongs to the co-ordinate/shared policies. It means that, their focus remains in member states. The institutions of EU only provides their co-ordination and harmonization. The aim of European social policy is to establish a minimum social standard in all member states. (Václavíková, 2008)

Klíčová slova:


key words

european welfare

social policy



  • Introduction
    1. Key words
    2. Types of European welfare states
    3. Areas of social policy and level of their Europeanization

  • BRDEK M, JÍROVÁ, H. Sociální politika v zemích EU a ČR. Praha: Codex Bohemia,1998
  • FEATHERSTONE, K. RADAELLI, C. The politics of Europeanization. Oxford: Oxford University Press, 2003
  • KLEINMAN, M. A European Welfare State? Basingstoke : Palgrave, 2002
  • KREBS ed all. Sociální politika. Codex: Praha, 1997
  • VÁCLAVÍKOVÁ, A. Evropská unie. Optys: Opava, 2008
  • WALLACE, H. MARK, A. ALASDAIR R. Policy-making in the European union (sixth edition). New York: Oxford University Press, 2010.
  • Schmidt, S. K. (2007) ‘Mutual Recognition as a new mode of governance’, Journal of European Public Policy, 14: 5, 2007, p. 667-681.
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