New Winds of Social Policy in the East

Original Paper

Abstract

East Europe’s welfare states have undergone enormous changes in the two and a half decades since Communism collapsed. After forming part of a distinctive Communist political economy for four decades, they have been restructured in market-conforming directions that re-define public and private responsibility for societal well-being. Civil society or nonprofit organizations (NPOs) and market providers have entered the welfare sphere. The present paper maps divergent trajectories of East-Central European (ECE) welfare states and those of the Former Soviet Union (FSU), focusing on persistent legacies as well as innovation, political negotiation over reforms, and the strong influence of the European Union in shaping outcomes. It shows the growing role of NPOs across contemporary ECE and FSU welfare sectors, as advocates and as service providers partnering with governments. While NPOs remain comparatively weak in post-communist states, there is remarkable convergence of democratic and authoritarian regimes around policies of government–NPO partnerships to improve welfare performance.

Keywords

East-Central Europe (ECE) Former Soviet Union (FSU) Nonprofit organizations (NPOs) Social policy Welfare state 

Résumé

Les États providence de l’Europe de l’Est ont connu d’énormes changements au cours des 25 dernières années depuis l’effondrement du communisme. Après avoir fait partie d’une économie politique communiste particulière pendant quatre décennies, ils ont été restructurés dans des directions conformes au marché qui redéfinissent les responsabilités publiques et privées pour le bien-être sociétal. La société civile ou les organisations à but non lucratif (OBNL) et les fournisseurs du marché se sont lancés dans le domaine de la protection sociale. Le présent article analyse les trajectoires divergentes des États providence de l’Europe centrale et orientale et ceux de l’ancienne Union soviétique, et s’intéresse plus particulièrement à l’héritage permanent ainsi qu’à l’innovation, aux négociations politiques sur les réformes et à la forte influence de l’Union européenne pour orienter les résultats. Il montre le rôle croissant des OBNL dans tous les secteurs du bien-être des pays contemporains de l’Europe centrale et orientale et de l’ancienne Union soviétique, tandis que les avocats et les fournisseurs de services s’associent avec les gouvernements. Si les OBNL restent relativement faibles dans les pays post-communistes, il existe une convergence remarquable des régimes démocratiques et autoritaires autour des politiques de partenariats gouvernement-OBNL pour améliorer les performances de l’aide sociale.

Zusammenfassung

Die osteuropäischen Sozialstaaten haben in den zweieinhalb Jahrzehnten seit dem Zusammenbruch des Kommunismus enorme Änderungen erfahren. Nachdem sie vier Jahrzehnte lang Teil einer ausgeprägten kommunistischen politischen Wirtschaft waren, wurden sie in marktkonforme Richtungen umstrukturiert, die die öffentliche und private Verantwortung für das gesellschaftliche Wohl neu definieren. Bürgergesellschafts- oder gemeinnützige Organisationen und Marktanbieter sind in den Sozialbereich eingedrungen. In dem vorliegende Beitrag werden die divergenten Entwicklungspfade mittelosteuropäischer Sozialstaaten und der Länder der ehemaligen Sowjetunion erarbeitet, wobei man sich auf die anhaltenden Hinterlassenschaften sowie auf Innovationen, die politischen Verhandlungen über Reformen und den starken Einfluss der Europäischen Union auf die Resultate konzentriert. Man sieht die wachsende Rolle gemeinnütziger Organisationen in den heutigen Sozialbereichen der mittelosteuropäischen Länder und den Ländern der ehemaligen Sowjetunion als Interessenvertreter und Dienstleistungsanbieter, die mit den Regierungen in eine Partnerschaft treten. Während die gemeinnützigen Organisationen in post-kommunistischen Staaten vergleichsweise schwach bleiben, erkennt man eine bemerkenswerte Annäherung demokratischer und autoritärer Regime bei den Richtlinien zu den Partnerschaften zwischen Regierung und gemeinnützigen Organisationen zur Verbesserung des Sozialleistungssystems.

Resumen

Los estados de bienestar de Europa del Este han sufrido cambios enormes en las dos décadas y media desde el colapso del comunismo. Después de formar parte de una economía política comunista inconfundible durante cuatro décadas, han sido reestructurados en direcciones conformes con el mercado que redefinen la responsabilidad pública y privada para el bienestar de la sociedad. La sociedad civil y las organizaciones sin ánimo de lucro (OSL/NPO) y los proveedores del mercado han entrado en la esfera del bienestar. El presente documento cartografía las trayectorias divergentes de los estados de bienestar de Europa Central-del Este (ECE) y de aquellos de la antigua Unión Soviética (Former Soviet Union “FSU”), centrándose en los legados persistentes, así como también en la innovación, la negociación política sobre reformas, y la fuerte influencia de la Unión Europea en la formulación de los resultados. Muestra el creciente papel de las OSL/NPO en todos los sectores de bienestar de la ECE y la FSU contemporáneas, como defensoras y como proveedoras de servicios asociándose a los gobiernos. Aunque las OSL/NPO siguen siendo comparativamente débiles en los estados poscomunistas, existe una notable convergencia de los regímenes democráticos y autoritarios en torno a las políticas de asociaciones gobierno-OSL/NPO para mejorar los resultados del bienestar.

摘要

东欧的福利国家自共产主义倒台之后的十五年中发生了巨大的变化。 在共产主义政治经济体系的四十年中,市场的发展对实现社会福祉过程中的公共责任和私人责任进行了重新定义, 这些国家也按照市场的发展方向进行了重组。 民间团体或非盈利性组织(NPO)和市场供应商已经进入了福利领域。 本论文描绘了中东欧(ECE)福利国家和前苏联福利国家(FSU)不同的轨迹, 重点放在传统、创新、对改革进行的政治磋商以及欧盟对结果的强大影响。 显示 NPO 在ECE和FSU当前的福利领域中日渐扮演着宣传者的作用以及和政府联合起来提供服务的服务商的作用。 虽然NPO 在后共产主义国家中相对微弱, 但是, 在政府与NPO合作提高福利的政策中,出现了民主体制和极权体制的融合。

要約

共産主義の崩壊以来、東ヨーロッパの福祉国家は25年間で大きな変化を遂げている。40年間の特徴的な共産主義の政治経済が形成された後、社会福祉のための公共および民間の役割を再定義する市場適合が再構築されている。市民社会および非営利団体 (NPO) のプロバイダが福祉市場に参入している。本論文では、東中央ヨーロッパ(ECE)および旧ソビエト連邦(FSU)の福祉国家における拡散の軌跡を説明して、永続的な遺産、革新、改革、政治改革および成果を形成する欧州連合の強い影響に焦点を当てる。現代のECE とFSUの福祉セクターにおける擁護者と政府の提携サービス・プロバイダーとして、NPOの成長の役割を提示する。NPOが共産主義体制後でのNPOは比較的脆弱であり、福祉実現を改善するために、NPOのパートナーシップのポリシーに対する民主主義と独裁主義的な政体に顕著な収束がみられる。

ملخص

شهدت رفاهية دول شرق أوروبا تغيرات هائلة في العقدين ونصف منذ إنهيار الشيوعية. بعد تشكيل جزء من الإقتصاد السياسي الشيوعي المميز لأربعة عقود، فقد تم إعادة هيكلتها في سوق – مطابق الإتجاهات الذي يعيد تعريف المسؤولية العامة والخاصة من أجل رفاهية المجتمع. المجتمع المدني أو المنظمات الغير ربحية (NPOs) ومقدمي خدمة السوق دخلوا مجال الرعاية الإجتماعية. البحث الحالي يرسم خريطة مسارات متباينة بين دول رفاهية شرق – وسط أوروبا (ECE)وتلك التابعة للإتحاد السوفيتي السابق (FSU)، مع التركيز على الموروثات المستمرة وكذلك الإبتكار، المفاوضات السياسية حول الإصلاحات، والتأثير القوي للإتحاد الأوروبي في تشكيل النتائج. فإنه يدل على الدور المتزايد للمنظمات الغير ربحية (NPOs) عبر اللجنة الإقتصادية لشرق – وسط أوروبا (ECE)المعاصر وقطاعات الرعاية الإجتماعية للإتحاد السوفياتي السابق(FSU)، ودعاة ومقدمي خدمات الشراكة مع الحكومات. في حين لا تزال المنظمات الغير الربحية (NPOs) ضعيفة نسبيا” في دول ما بعد الشيوعية، هناك تقارب ملحوظ للأنظمة الديمقراطية والسلطوية حول سياسات الشراكات الحكومية- المنظمات الغير حكومية(NPO)- لتحسين أداء الرعاية الإجتماعية.

Notes

Acknowledgments

Research for this paper was supported by the project on Evolving East-West Patterns of Government–Nonprofit Cooperation, International Laboratory for Nonprofit Sector Studies, Higher School of Economics, Moscow, and Brown University, Providence, Rhode Island. This article was prepared within the framework of a subsidy granted to the National Research University Higher School of Economics, Russian Federation by the Government of the Russian Federation for the implementation of the Global Competitiveness Program.

Compliance with Ethical Standards

Conflict of interest

The author declares that there is no conflict of interest.

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Copyright information

© International Society for Third-Sector Research and The Johns Hopkins University 2015

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Department of Political ScienceBrown UniversityProvidenceUSA

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