The United Kingdom before and after Brexit

Benjamin Leruth, Peter Taylor-Gooby

OnderzoeksoutputAcademicpeer review

2 Citaten (Scopus)


The United Kingdom’s liberal welfare state has undergone profound changes since the Great Recession. Torn between individualism (advocated by successive governments under David Cameron, Theresa May and Boris Johnson) and predistribution (advocated by the Labour Party), the country has also not been immune to populism through the rise in influence of the UK Independence Party in the mid-2010s and policies advocated by Boris Johnson. Over the past decade, the most notable event that divided the country was the vote to leave the United Kingdom. Even though Brexit is best understood as a distinctive process of differentiated disintegration in the European uUnion and its long-term socio-economic effects remain difficult to predict, it certainly had a direct impact on the nature of the British welfare state itself, as welfare chauvinistic measures were proposed by David Cameron as part of the failed renegotiation package. These proposals were approved by the European Council, further suggesting that welfare chauvinism can be accepted (or at least tolerated) by other European member states. This chapter explores the past, present and future of the liberal welfare state in Europe. Following a review of the definition and conceptualisation of liberal welfare regimes, it offers a history of the development of the British welfare state and how it shifted towards neo- liberalism from the 1970s onwards. It then focuses on the Great Recession and the subsequent Brexit vote to assess how these events have affected the British Welfare State. The chapter then concludes by reflecting on the impact the Covid-19 crisis may have on the future of social policy in the UK.
Originele taal-2English
TitelHandbook on Austerity, Populism and the Welfare State
RedacteurenBent Greve
UitgeverijEdward Elgar
Aantal pagina's16
ISBN van elektronische versie9781789906745
ISBN van geprinte versie9781789906738
StatusPublished - 2021


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