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Freedom of Movement in the EU and Welfare State Closure: Welfare Regime Type, Benefit Restrictions and Their Implications for Social Mobility

Part of the Transformations of the State book series (TRST)

Abstract

This chapter examines welfare state transformations of EU member states in reaction to increased EU internal migration and mobility. How the welfare regime can be a factor in explaining policy change is assessed according to the cases of Germany, Sweden and the UK. The existence and accessibility of benefits in these respective welfare systems are strong predictors of attempts by states to restrict access to benefits. Party politics and levels of issue politicization also mediate welfare state closure as policy change aims at restricting and discouraging movements of poorer EU citizens. In this vein, social via spatial mobility is less attainable for EU citizens of lower socio-economic status. As a consequence, fewer opportunities for mobility impacts inequality among EU citizens and member states.

Keywords

  • European Union
  • Welfare State
  • European Union Member State
  • European Union Legislation
  • Habitual Residence

These keywords were added by machine and not by the authors. This process is experimental and the keywords may be updated as the learning algorithm improves.

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Notes

  1. 1.

    Among others cases that point in a similar direction: C-140/ 12 (Brey), C-456/ 02 (Trojani), C-413/99 (Baumbast).

  2. 2.

    With regard to EU member states, Menz clearly disagrees with the hypothesis that generous welfare states would draw more immigration (2006, 395).

  3. 3.

    See media coverage on the topic: Budras, Corinna. 2014. “Welche Sozialleistungen stehen EU-Bürgern zu?” F.A.Z., 28 March. Accessed August 5, 2015. <http://www.faz.net/aktuell/wirtschaft/wirtschaftspolitik/armutszuwanderung-welche-sozialleistungen-stehen-eu-buergern-zu-12865438.html>

    Stegemann, Jana. 2013. ‘Job-Center verweigern rechtswidrig Leistungen für EU-Bürger’, Süddeutsche Zeitung, 11 October. Accessed August 5, 2015. <http://www.sueddeutsche.de/wirtschaft/sozialleistungen-fuer-einwanderer-job-center-verweigern-rechtswidrig-leistungen-fuer-eu-buerger-1.1792475>

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Roos, C. (2016). Freedom of Movement in the EU and Welfare State Closure: Welfare Regime Type, Benefit Restrictions and Their Implications for Social Mobility. In: Wulfgramm, M., Bieber, T., Leibfried, S. (eds) Welfare State Transformations and Inequality in OECD Countries. Transformations of the State. Palgrave Macmillan, London. https://doi.org/10.1057/978-1-137-51184-3_12

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  • DOI: https://doi.org/10.1057/978-1-137-51184-3_12

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