Challenges to the Welfare State: Internal and External Dynamics for Change, by Henry Cavanna

This book examines and assesses cultural, economic and political problems facing the United States and Europe and provides policy suggestions to alleviate them. Sir Samuel Brittan, Assistant Editor of the Financial Times, singles out the growing differentials in market-clearing rates of pay in the UK for special attention, in support of his call for a minimum income guarantee. Whilst he argues that a full basic income is unlikely to be affordable in the forseeable future, he still favours “a very small unconditional payment to everyone to keep the principle of citizen’s income alive.” Brittan’s introductory chapter, together with a series of chapters by other expert authors, also addresses the question of whether further integration in Europe will result in an environment where all citizens are guaranteed only certain basic social rights and are encouraged to take private financial responsibility for health care, pension provision and insurance. Contributors include: P Beneton, S Brittan, H Cavanna, M Ferrera, N Glazer, H Keman, S Kuhnle, E Matzner, K Newton, V Rys, P Scherer. Edward Elgar Publishing 1998, 224 pp, hbk, ISBN 1 85898 636 2 £49.95.