English title: Welfare state values in the European Union, 2002–2008. A multilevel investigation of formal institutions and individual attitudes

Author(s): Ferry Koster - Monika-Ewa Kaminska -

Language: English

Type: Journal article

Year: 2012


This article investigates to what extent EU citizens support three dimensions of welfare state values – developed role of state, equal opportunities and equal outcomes – and whether national level institutions and social policies can explain cross-national variation in these values. Two different mechanisms are distinguished, namely that institutions can have a norm-shaping function and thus are associated with stronger public support or that the public opinion can function as a thermostat if they are dissatisfied with the current institutions. Using data from 150,000 citizens of 25 EU countries between 2002 and 2008, empirical evidence for both the norm-shaping and the thermostat functions are found. Theoretical and practical implications of these findings are discussed.

Volume: 19

Issue: 6

From page no: 900

To page no: 920

Refereed: Yes

DOI: 10.1080/13501763.2011.610696

Journal: Journal of European Public Policy