Fighting Poverty and Social Exclusion in the EU: A Chance in Europe 2020, 1st Edition (Hardback) book cover

Fighting Poverty and Social Exclusion in the EU

A Chance in Europe 2020, 1st Edition

Edited by Matteo Jessoula, Ilaria Madama


226 pages | 10 B/W Illus.

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Hardback: 9781138930872
pub: 2018-06-27
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pub: 2018-06-14
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In the field of anti-poverty policies, the interplay between the Europe 2020 overarching strategy and the 'Semester' have marked major discontinuity vis-à-vis the Open Method of Coordination for social protection and social inclusion (Social OMC) of the Lisbon phase. This book therefore asks whether and how Europe matters in the fight against poverty and social exclusion by assessing the emergence and possible institutionalisation of a European multi-level, multi-stakeholder and integrated policy arena in the new institutional framework.

Supranational developments, multi-level interactions, as well as the strategy effects at the national level are analysed in six European countries - Belgium, Germany, Italy, Poland, UK and Sweden – with the aim to identify the key factors affecting the implementation of the Europe 2020 anti-poverty strategy.

This book will be of key interest to students, scholars and practitioners in social policy, political science and European governance, and more broadly to European Union politics, European integrations studies, sociology and economics.


"An exemplary multi-level comparative study of the Europe 2020 anti-poverty strategy, based on a rigorous analytical framework. A particular strength of the volume is its actor-centred approach and process-tracing methodology, which demonstrates the crucial role of domestic opposition and support in shaping the national effects of the EU's poverty-reduction target." - Jonathan Zeitlin, Professor of Public Policy and Governance, University of Amsterdam, The Netherlands.

"Through a collection of very well-carried out analyses about the effects of European soft law and policy in member states, the book sheds lights on the complex, yet tangible effects of social Europe, during the Great Recession, even if the EU instruments cannot and should not solve the issues of unemployment and poverty. A must-read for scholars and students of political economy and social policy." - Caroline de la Porte, Professor in European and Comparative Welfare Policy, Copenhagen Business School, Denmark.

"This volume is unique in providing the kind of detailed research and reflection that is essential to investigating the impact of Europe 2020 in addressing poverty in Europe. When readers finish this collection of chapters, they will be in doubt about the significance – but differential roll-out and effects – of Europe 2020 from a poverty perspective and the political and institutional factors at national and supranational level that condition the achievements and outcomes." - Mary Daly, Professor of Sociology and Social Policy, University of Oxford, UK.

"This book provides an excellent discussion of the role the EU plays in policies against poverty and social exclusion, buttressed by six country case studies. Its careful analysis, which takes into account both outcomes and procedures, leads to nuanced and useful conclusions on the limits, the persistent relevance, and the potential of European initiatives in the domain of poverty and social exclusion." - Frank Vandenbroucke, University of Amsterdam, The Netherlands.

Table of Contents

1. Fighting Poverty and Social Exclusion in the Europe 2020 Framework: An Introduction [Ilaria Madama and Matteo Jessoula]

2. Europe 2020 and the Fight Against Poverty: From Target to Governance [Sebastiano Sabato, Chiara Agostini, Marcello Natili and Matteo Jessoula]

3. Europe Domesticated: Anti-Poverty Policy in the United Kingdom under Europe 2020 [Daniel Clegg]

4. The Reluctant European: EU2020, 'The Poverty Target' and the Swedish Welfare State [Håkan Johansson]

5. The German Way: Reaffirming Sovereignty, While Accommodating the EU Anti-Poverty Strategy [Katharina Zimmermann and Norbert Petzold]

6. The Game of Compliance: Polish Anti-Poverty Policy and Europe 2020 [Marianna Zielenska]

7. Lucky Timing and Propitious Conditions: Italy’s Anti-Poverty Policy under Europe 2020 [Ilaria Madama, Marcello Natili and Chiara Agostini]

8. Implementing Europe 2020 in Belgium: A Case of Coordinated "Hybrid" Governance for Social Inclusion? [Antonino Sorrenti]

9. Linking Lisbon and Europe 2020: The "Peer Reviews" in the Social OMC [Sebastiano Sabato]

10. Conclusions [Matteo Jessoula and Ilaria Madama]

About the Editors

Matteo Jessoula is Associate Professor of Political Science at Department of Social and Political Sciences of the University of Milan. He is also Director of the Welfare Laboratory, Director of the International Observatory on Social Cohesion and Inclusion, Coordinator of LPF-Comparative Politics and Public Philosophy Lab and National coordinator within ESPN-European Social Policy Network

.Ilaria Madama is Associate Professor of Political Science at the University of Milan in the Department of Social and Political Sciences. She is also Senior Researcher in the ERC-REScEU project, Coordinator of the EuVisions Observatory and Coordinator of the minor degree in Rights, Work and Equal Opportunities (DiLPO).

About the Series

Routledge Studies in the Political Economy of the Welfare State

This series presents leading edge research on the recasting of European welfare states. The series is interdisciplinary, featuring contributions from experts in economics, political science and social policy. The books provide a comparative analysis of topical issues, including:

  • reforms of the major social programmes - pensions, health, social security
  • the changing political cleavages in welfare politics
  • policy convergence and social policy innovation
  • the impact of globalization.

Learn more…

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