Sozial- und Verteilungspolitik

WSI: Key research topics: Social policy and redistribution

Research is concerned with welfare state and social policy changes, structural causes for the increase in social inequality, and the search for possibilities to foster a fairer distribution of life chances.

Public social policy faces great pressure to adapt to challenges arising from the increasing individualisation of life courses and the expansion of often precarious forms of non-standard employment. The growing importance of privatised and corporate social policy implies new challenges not only for individual citizens, but also for social partners on the corporate and state level. Building on a critical empirical evaluation of existing framework and regulations in Germany and across Europe, WSI research seeks to uncover shortcomings in the regulatory environment and develop reform proposals based on an all-embracing notion of social security.

Main research topics

changing welfare state and social security systems - health and pension policies - poverty, distribution of life chances - redistribution policy, redistribution of income and assets - redistribution effects of taxation and social policy

Selected Publications

Florian Blank, 24.02.2021 : The Emergence of Consumer Organisations in the Field of Social Policy

What does the introduction of market mechanisms in welfare provision mean? Evidence gathered from the agendas of the committee for labour and social affairs and the committee for health of the Federal Parliament 1990–2017 shows that consumers’ interests are represented by consumer organizations, but to varying degrees. Differences follow the variances in the development and regulation of the specific welfare markets.

Social Europe : A Big Legacy: Wealth In Europe

The "Inequality in Europe" series on Social Europe examines the different dimensions of inequality in Europe and what kind of policy mix could help addressing them. Anita Tiefensee (WSI) gives an overview on the current distribution of wealth.