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Workfare Tendencies in Scandinavian Welfare Policies
Nanna Kildal, February 2001

During the 90s, the problem of unemployment has been answered by workfare-similar welfare reforms throughout Western societies. In this article the focus is on the shaping of these policies in Scandinavian welfare states. The first part consists of a conceptual discussion and demarcation of the concept of 'workfare' in relation to other activation policies as 'active labour market policy' and 'welfare to work' programmes. Secondly, the overall institutional pattern of the Scandinavian welfare states is presented along with an empirical overview of the policy-trends and their workfare elements, and lastly, the workfare-tendencies is evaluated normatively in relation to some basic ideas of democratic, decent societies, and in relation to the Scandinavian universalistic welfare model.
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Created by LD. Approved by GS. Last update 1 February 2001