Social Policies

A.Y. 2021/2022
Overall hours
Learning objectives
The course provides to students a general understanding of historical evolution of social politics in Italy and in Europe. Different patterns and different fields (education, working, family, pensions and health) of social policies in Europe will be examined. A part of the course will be dedicated to childcare and reconciliation policies. Globalizations processes and their effects on social policies on the emergence of new social needs will be analyzed. In times of globalization, social policies have to provide real answers in order to guarantee equal access to the high-quality services, to equal wealth distribution and social protection in case of unemployment. The aim of the course is to provide analytical tools and educational skills useful to recognize complex web of global inter-linkages at social, political and economic level. These tools and skills may be useful in some professional activities in the field of social services, departments of government, national and supranational institutions
Expected learning outcomes
At the end of the course the students should have developed knowledge and understanding of the effect of globalization on welfare state; Knowledge and understanding of different social policy fields (health, job, pensions, education, family) and of all the different actors involved (market, State, third sector). Autonomy of judgement and students' communicative capabilities will be developed by reading of scientific articles and discussions during the lessons. The final exam aims to verify the expected learning outcomes in respect to the students' capacity of understanding, applying knowledge, developing a critical analysis of the theoretical perspectives introduced by the course
Course syllabus and organization

Single session

Lesson period
First trimester
Course syllabus
The course programme is divided into two modules. The first module introduces key concepts and theoretical perspectives crucial to the study of social policy, the characteristics of the Italian welfare state, with reference to changes in policies in the neo-liberal sense and the role of welfare in the recent period of economic stagnation. Specifically, the lessons of the first module will address the following topics: the concept of citizenship; poverty as a social problem and the measures to combat it following the industrial revolution; the different phases of welfare development from the 19th century to the present; the welfare crisis and the rise of neoliberalism; the theories on the different European welfare models; Italian welfare and the structuring of public expenditure.
The second module focuses on the description of the set of public policies implemented in Italy since the Second World War with particular reference to specific sectors. In particular, the lessons will address health, pension and labour policies. Finally, in the last part of the course (about five lessons) three welfare aspects will be analysed: the relationship between families and social policies, with particular attention to the role of women; measures against poverty in Italy and Europe and chlidcare policies.
Prerequisites for admission
No specific knowledge is required for the course, although it is preferable to have notions of Sociology, in particular regarding social inequality, modernisation processes and the concept of citizenship.
Teaching methods
Lectures will be held in person. All topics covered in the programme will be addressed from time to time. Lessons will be integrated with the reading of essays and articles available on the Ariel platform. During the lessons students will be asked to discuss and comment this material in the light of the interpretative tool acquired.
Teaching Resources
Material for attending students
Ranci C., Pavolini E., Le politiche di welfare, il Mulino, Bologna, 2015
During the lessons the necessary bibliography will be provided to deepen the specific topics dealt with.

Material for non-attending students
Ranci C., Pavolini E., Le politiche di welfare, il Mulino, Bologna, 2015
A text of students'choice between:
- Sabatinelli S., Politiche per crescere. La prima infanzia tra cura e investimento sociale, il Mulino, Bologna, 2017.
Esping-Andersen G., La rivoluzione incompiuta. Donne, famiglie e welfare, il Mulino, Bologna, 2011.
Assessment methods and Criteria
The examination will take place online in written form using the Microsoft Teams platform in attendance unless otherwise specified. The assessment will take into account the ability to critically b evaluate the topics of the programme, to highlight the evolution of social policies by placing it within the historical and social dynamism of recent decades, to be able to address the different dimensions of social policies in a comparative way within the European context.
Attending students can choose to participate in team work and produce a written report. This work will be discussed during the final lessons and, if its assessment receives a good evaluation, will complement the final exam mark.
Alternatively, there will be an in itinere test at the end of classes on the first module.
Lessons: 40 hours
Professor: Santoro Monica
Educational website(s)