Culture and the Politics of Welfare: Exploring Societal by John Hudson;Nam Kyoung Jo;Antonia Keung

By John Hudson;Nam Kyoung Jo;Antonia Keung

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Other candidate variables were not expected to have a significant and constant impact on spending based on inspection of the raw data – GDP growth rate, permissive values on adherence to laws, and political activeness – and removed from our analysis except for cabinet composition, which remained in on the basis of a priori theoretical assumptions. Based on the above, we could select just the 5 variables that are strong candidates, the 12 that are strong and possibly influential, or the 5 strong candidates supplemented with a smaller number of others based on a priori theoretically rooted assumptions and the results of correlation analysis.

They are supplemented by data on economic contexts (unemployment rate, female participation in the labour market rate, economic growth rate, gross domestic product [GDP] per capita) drawn from OECD datasets and the recently updated version of Kühner’s (2007a, 2013) ‘Comparative Welfare Reform Dataset’ which is based on authoritative sources (OECD and International Monetary Fund [IMF]). Data on the political context (party composition of government; trade union density) also comes from Kühner’s ‘Comparative Welfare Reform Dataset’ based on the ‘Comparative Political Data Set 1960–2010’ compiled by Armingeon et al.

Blekesaune and Quadango, 2003) lead to higher social spending for the unemployed. Indeed, these key studies have suggested that they do: for example, Blekesaune and Quadango (2003: 422) found that public support for welfare policies towards the old was significantly correlated with the degree of egalitarianism in a nation. Arguably our conservative social norms societal value operates in a similar spectrum to social solidaristic or egalitarian values, but capturing the degree to which some groups are ‘othered’ through entrenched social norms.

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