Do We Really Need Welfare States?



Tuesday, 15. October 2013 | 16:00 Uhr

Speaker

Franz-Xaver Kaufmann

Organisation

University Bielefeld

Reporting

Franz-Xaver Kaufmann, Professor Emeritus of the University of Bielefeld, made the benefits of the welfare state, but also the critics’ objections, the focus of his presentation.
The social or welfare state is not only the sum of its public institutions that should serve the legal protection, economic security, and personal promotion of the population or specific population groups. Rather, the welfare state is the institutional realization of a political idea which took shape before the background of the Second World War and obtained transnational legitimacy through the economic, social and cultural rights in the context of the United Nations’ ‘Universal Declaration of Human Rights’. He examined the questions as to what extent and under which conditions the realization of the guiding principles of the welfare state are advantageous, what the functionality of the welfare state consists of, what its normative requirements are, and where specific risks lie for a welfare state society under the conditions of democracy.
One of the questions from the audience was whether a debt ceiling for the old age and survivors’ pension and the disabled pension would make sense to prevent excessive indebtedness? Find out what the speaker thinks about this in the video.

Presentation of Professor Franz-Xaver Kaufmann

Franz-Xaver Kaufmann

Professor for Sociology and Social Policy, Faculty of Sociology, University of Bielefeld (FRG) (1969 –
1997)
Director, Institute for Population Research and Social Policy, University of Bielefeld (1980 – 1992)
Director, Center for Interdisciplinary Research, University of Bielefeld (1979 – 1983)
Visiting Professor, Faculty of Law, Economics and Social Sciences, University of Munster (FRG) (1968 – 1969)
Senior Research Associate, “Sozialforschungsstelle an der Universität Münster”, (Professor H. Schelsky) Dortmund (FRG) (1963 – 1968)
Staff member, Personnel Section, CIBA S.A., Basle (Switzerland) (1960 – 1963)
Assistant, Seminar of political economy, Hochschule St. Gallen (Switzerland) (1956 – 1957)

Studies and Degrees
Habilitation for Sociology and Social Policy, by the Faculty of Law, Economics and Social Sciences, University of Munster (1968)
Doctorate in Economics, Hochschule St. Gallen (1960)
First degree (lic.oec.) in Economics, Hochschule St. Gallen (1956)
Studies of Law, Political Economy, Business Science, and Sociology at the University of Zurich, Hochschule St. Gallen and the University of Paris (1952 – 1958)

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