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The Scandinavian cluster of welfare societies has for many years been considered a realisation of Richard Titmuss’ institutional redistributive model of social policy. Recent reforms have, however challenged this assumption. The paper sets out to evaluate whether recent major changes in welfare provision are merely modifying the model or whether the Scandinavian states are converging towards some kind of European social model. It is concluded that besides very many first order changes, such as reducing benefits, an number of second and third order changes have occurred; i.e. the institutional setting and the objective of the welfare states have changed during the 1990s. The Scandinavian welfare states are still distinct, but less so than a decade or two ago. The new elements are features usually associated with welfaremodels at play within the European Union. It is, hence, concluded that welfare in Scandinavia is undergoing a process of Europeanisation.

Peter Abrahamson
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