Écoles et masters, formation commune et programme de sciences sociales
insights about speciﬁc topics and broader theoretical frameworks. The teaching assistant will propose two facultative seminars to illustrate what we expect from you and discuss speciﬁc questions on the ﬁrst homework and the essay. The ﬁrst seminar will be held in week 4. Pedagogical method : Lecture Course. Course Description : The course provides a comprehensive outlook of comparative social policy, spanning from theory to practice. The lecture series is divided in four parts. The ﬁrst part introduces the comparative method and its centrality within the social policy literature. We reﬂect upon the possibility to generalise from the analysis of few cases by moving up and down on the ‘ladder of abstraction’. In addition, we deﬁne the comparative social policy ﬁeld in accordance with the contemporary and historical literature. The second part illustrates the main explanations of welfare state development and describes EspingAndersen’s welfare regimes. We also critically assess the evolution of welfare regimes over time and their ‘potential’ heuristic validity for the future. The third part highlights the main challenges (namely new social risks, family changes, the demographic evolution, globalization and crises) for welfare states and analyses how different countries are coping with social change. The fourth and last part of the course considers welfare states as an independent variable: alternative welfare state conﬁgurations have different effects on redistribution, social capital creation, and the competitive advantage of countries. For this reason we analyse how countries use social policy to address simultaneously societal and economic issues. Finally, the conclusion reﬂects upon the potential trajectory and future evolution of the welfare state assuming in turn ‘utopian’ and ‘pragmatic’ perspectives. Required reading : to be deﬁned.
Pedagogical format : Lecture alone Course validation : Students shall be evaluated on the basis of a mid-term test (33% of the total grade) and a ﬁnal exam (66% of the total grade). A half-point bonus could be added to the ﬁnal grade on the basis of class participation. Both the mid-term and ﬁnal tests consist of two short essays and multiple choice questions. Workload : The course revolves around lectures but encourages active participation. Weekly readings are compulsory; students shall be questioned and invited to discuss class topics in the initial and ﬁnal part of each meeting. Readings will be made available to students online. Course Description : In 2016, mounting anti-EU sentiments in Europe culminated in the Brexit vote. Differences between European countries, rather than being regarded as signs of cultural and economic richness, were increasingly outlined as latent contradictions of the EU integration project. How large are such differences? And what about commonalities? This course aims at surveying national societies in Europe, assuming (but also discussing) the persistent centrality of the nation state as key template of social life. Building on the macro-micro dialectics, the course unfolds as an encounter with ‘structures’ and patterns of individual ‘agency’ across European societies. With a comparative approach, the course draws on empirical research on the characteristics and behaviours of institutions and actors. Trajectories of convergence, divergence and hybridization are illustrated as forming a complex texture that ultimately deﬁnes the uniqueness of ‘Europe’ in the contemporary world. Required reading : Alba, R., and Foner, N. (2016). Integration’s challenges and opportunities in the Wealthy West. Journal of Ethnic and Migration Studies, 42(1), 3-22 ; Archambault, E. (2009). The Third Sector in Europe: Does It Exhibit a Converging Movement? Comparative Social Research, 26(1), 3-24 ; Armingeon, K., and Schädel, L. (2015). Social inequality in political participation: The dark sides of individualisation. West European Politi