Contingent Learning in Times of Crisis: How Can Hirschman’s Hiding Hand Help Policymakers Face Current Pandemic?

By Mita Marra

During the current pandemic, I have been reflecting on the decision-making style of the Italian, and other European and North-American political leaders, mulling over how policy learning takes place in times of crisis. Contrary to national political stereotypes, I recurred to policy studies, cognitive psychology, and mostly Albert Hirschman’s theories to reconstruct how political leaders make decisions under critical conditions.

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The Time has Finally Come to Start Deconstitutionalizing the EU

by Jean-Claude Barbier

Mario Draghi will be famous for many things in the future, but mainly for two: one is the astonishingly bold choice he made to act “whatever it took” (his “whatever, though, never included the act of sharing debts, Vergemeinschaftung in German, among the nation-states of the EU); but the other one is his very unfortunate declaration to the Wall Street Journal (2012), according to which the “European social model had already gone”.

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The Basic Income Debate: Keeping it Intelligent

by Malcolm Torry

Introduction

During the past five years or so we have seen growing interest in the idea of a Basic Income (also known as a Citizen’s Income, a Citizen’s Basic Income, or a Universal Basic Income), that is, an unconditional income for every individual. Increasing income insecurity has clearly been one of the reasons for that increase in interest, so it is no surprise that during the coronavirus crisis, which has seen incomes become even less secure, we have seen an even larger increase in interest in Basic Income.

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How can scientists collaborate to end the social distancing measures?

by Koen Decancq

In this brief note, I sketch a framework that may help us to think about finding an exit-strategy from the Covid-19 social distancing measures. The central idea of the framework is that these measures have an impact on the reproduction number as well as on social welfare. While the reproduction number is clearly defined, the notion of social welfare is a bit more elusive. I argue that social welfare should be conceived in a multidimensional way, giving extra weight to the fate of the worst-off.

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Multiple Hidden Risks for Older People: The Looming Pension Crisis Following this Pandemic

by Bernhard Ebbinghaus
  • Every fourth person in Europe receives an old age, survivor or disability pension benefit, an automatic stabilizer during this crisis
  • Public pay-as-you go pension will soon come under severe pressure due to fiscal pressures accelerated during this pandemic
  • Private funded pensions with their additional risks, were hit hard after the 2008 crash and will again increase inequalities in old age in coming years
  • Older people transitioning from work to retirement will face immediate difficulties that need to be addressed
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JESP European Social Policy Blog Launched

By Mikko Kuisma, Janine Leschke, Emmanuele Pavolini, and Martin Seeleib-Kaiser

The current coronavirus pandemic provides a “stress test” to the capacity of our welfare states to protect individuals and households from old and new social risks as well as to foster solidarity among EU Member States. The editorial team and the editorial board of JESP have decided that this is a good time for launching the JESP European Social Policy Blog.

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From Moral Hazard to Moral Opportunity. A Dialogue on the COVID19 Crisis and the EU

By Maurizio Ferrera, László Andor, Bea Cantillon, Martin Seeleib-Kaiser and Frank Vandenbroucke

Maurizio Ferrera – The COVID-19 crisis has suddenly reopened the long-standing controversy over solidarity between countries within the EU. Like ten years ago, when the sovereign debt crisis broke out, today the challenge to be addressed is a pan-European emergency. Back then it was feared that financial contagion would expand from South to North. Today all countries are infected with coronavirus: the risk is common; no country is more “guilty” than the others.

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