In many countries regional and local authorities are given more powers in the field of social security. Supposedly, this is a general trend taking place throughout the developed world and beyond. In this volume the processes of devolution and decentralisation in social security are researched from a comparative European perspective, taking into account the constitutional setting and the architecture of the social security systems. The book includes thirteen country studies based on a uniform format and three overarching contributions.
The greater picture that emerges is that social insurance and family allowances are still very much a national competence and are predominantly functionally decentralised to a number of specialised agencies and institutions. There are only limited exceptions. A different conclusion must be drawn when we look at social assistance and social care. In many countries the role of local authorities has gradually increased over a longer period. However, in some countries this trend is reversing, and municipal powers are being limited or even taken back by central government.
Devolution and Decentralisation in Social Security shows how complex, differentiated and nationally diverse the state of devolution and decentralisation in Europe actually is. This book is of particular interest to scholars in the field of social policy and social security, constitutionalists and policy makers who are interested in local administration.