A1 Institutions of Societal Integration: Market Economies, Organisations, and Welfare States

Modern market economies and advanced welfare states are under global and socio-economic pressures to change. Although these challenges seem relatively similar for all modern societies, historically evolved welfare regimes and market systems vary considerably across European and other OECD countries.

The nexus between market and non-market institutions, between production and protection systems, is at the centre of the research area’s analytical and substantial focus. The theoretical starting point is the view that social action is embedded in specific social and institutional contexts that structure opportunities and constraints. Institutional change in market economies and welfare state reforms are partially dependent on societal support by collective actors and individuals, while also affecting the social relations and conditions on which they are based.
 The research area A1 combines projects that investigate market processes and organizations or public social policy interventions in a comparative perspective, often using both macro-institutional and micro-level data. A major fundamental question is the social and civic support for market economic activities and for welfare state policies. A connected second major topic is the analysis of the conditions for and process of welfare state reform and marketization. Finally, the research agenda also includes a concern for the consequences of changing production and protection systems for the life chances and social relations in Europe and other advanced economies.