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  • 1. Beland, Daniel
    et al.
    Blomqvist, Paula
    Uppsala University, Disciplinary Domain of Humanities and Social Sciences, Faculty of Social Sciences, Department of Government.
    Goul Andersen, Jorgen
    Palme, Joakim
    Uppsala University, Disciplinary Domain of Humanities and Social Sciences, Faculty of Social Sciences, Department of Government.
    Waddan, Alex
    The Universal Decline of Universality? Social Policy Change in Canada, Denmark, Sweden and the United Kingdom2014In: Social Policy & Administration, ISSN 0144-5596, E-ISSN 1467-9515, Vol. 48, no 7, p. 739-756Article in journal (Refereed)
    Abstract [en]

    The debate about the future of universal social programmes has been raging for years, both in social-democratic and in liberal welfare states. The objective of this article is to contribute to the literature on universality by analyzing the evolution of universal social programmes in two social-democratic and two liberal countries: Denmark, Sweden, Canada and the UK. This choice of countries provides the opportunity to investigate whether the principle and practice of universality has fared differently both within and between countries. The analysis focuses primarily on the national level while exploring three policy areas: pensions, healthcare and family policy, specifically child benefits and day care. The main conclusion of our comparative analysis is clear: among our two liberal and two social-democratic countries, the institutional strength of universality varies greatly from one policy area and one country to another. Considering this, there is no such a thing as a universal decline of universality.

  • 2.
    Bergqvist, Christina
    et al.
    Uppsala University, Disciplinary Domain of Humanities and Social Sciences, Faculty of Social Sciences, Department of Government.
    Saxonberg, Steven
    Masaryk Univ, Dept Social Policy & Social Work, Brno, Slovakia.;Comenius Univ, Dept European Studies & Int Relat, Fac Social & Econ Sci, Bratislava, Slovakia..
    The State as a Norm-Builder?: The Take-up of Parental Leave in Norway and Sweden2017In: Social Policy & Administration, ISSN 0144-5596, E-ISSN 1467-9515, Vol. 51, no 7, p. 1470-1487Article in journal (Refereed)
    Abstract [en]

    This study shows that although Norway and Sweden have rather similar family policies, the seemingly small differences that exist reflect different national ideals of care, and these differences encourage parents to employ different gendered moral rationalities. However, Sweden's ideal of equal-sharing/professional care', encourages fathers to take longer leaves than the Norwegian ideal of partial sharing plus choosing between professional or parental care'. Given their different national ideals of caring, different gendered moral rationalities emerge. While in Norway the dominant gendered moral rationality among our interviewees is man-doing-his-duty', in Sweden two different rationalities arise: the breastfeeding-plus-sharing' rationality and the male-opt-out'. This conclusion is based on 60 interviews with mothers and fathers in Oslo and Stockholm.

  • 3.
    Blomqvist, Paula
    Uppsala University, Disciplinary Domain of Humanities and Social Sciences, Faculty of Social Sciences, Department of Government.
    The Choice Revolution: Privatization of Swedish Social Services in the 1990s2004In: Social Policy & Administration, ISSN 0144-5596, E-ISSN 1467-9515, Vol. 38, no 2, p. 171-193Article in journal (Refereed)
    Abstract [en]

    During the 1990s, the Swedish welfare state was declared by some to be in a “crisis”, due to both financial strain and loss of political support. Others have argued that the spending cuts and reforms undertaken during this period did slow down the previous increase in social spending, but left the system basically intact. The main argument put forward in this article is that the Swedish welfare state has been and is still undergoing a transforming process whereby it risks losing one of its main characteristics, namely the belief in and institutional support for social egalitarianism. During the 1990s, the public welfare service sector opened up to competing private actors. As a result, the share of private provision grew, both within the health-care and primary education systems as well as within social service provision. This resulted in a socially segregating dynamic, prompted by the introduction of “consumer choice”. As will be shown in the article, the gradual privatization and market-orientation of the welfare services undermine previous Swedish notions of a “people's home”, where uniform, high-quality services are provided by the state to all citizens, regardless of income, social background or cultural orientation.

  • 4.
    Blomqvist, Paula
    et al.
    Uppsala University, Disciplinary Domain of Humanities and Social Sciences, Faculty of Social Sciences, Department of Government.
    Heimer, Maria
    Uppsala University, Disciplinary Domain of Humanities and Social Sciences, Faculty of Social Sciences, Department of Government.
    Equal Parenting when Families Break Apart: Alternating Residence and the Best Interests of the Child in Sweden2016In: Social Policy & Administration, ISSN 0144-5596, E-ISSN 1467-9515, Vol. 50, no 7, p. 787-804Article in journal (Refereed)
  • 5.
    Blomqvist, Paula
    et al.
    Uppsala University, Disciplinary Domain of Humanities and Social Sciences, Faculty of Social Sciences, Department of Government.
    Heimer, Maria
    Uppsala University, Disciplinary Domain of Humanities and Social Sciences, Faculty of Social Sciences, Department of Government.
    Equal Parenting when Families Break Apart: Alternating Residence and the Best Interests of the Child in Sweden2016In: Social Policy & Administration, ISSN 0144-5596, E-ISSN 1467-9515, Vol. 50, no 7, p. 787-804Article in journal (Refereed)
    Abstract [en]

    Shared, or alternating, residence for children when their parents separate is increasingly common. Sweden adopted a new policy in 1998 (modified in 2006) which gave courts the mandate to order 50/50 alternating residence against the will of one parent. Since then, the 50/50 alternating residence has become the legal norm in Sweden in cases of disputed custody. In this article, we ask how Swedish policymakers reasoned in relation to the potentially conflicting values of equal parenting post-separation and the interests of children. More specifically, we investigate how they addressed some of the most common objections to court-ordered alternating residence. We found that all three issues were discussed extensively during the policy-making process, but that, in the end, none of them was seen as contradictory to the goal of promoting more equal parenting roles post-separation through the introduction of court-ordered alternating residence. This policy outcome, we argue, should be seen in light of Sweden's long-standing commitment to strengthening the role of fathers in the care of children.

  • 6.
    Mahon, Rianne
    et al.
    Wilfrid Laurier Univ, Balsillie Sch Int Affairs, Waterloo, ON N2L 3C5, Canada.;Wilfrid Laurier Univ, Dept Polit Sci, Waterloo, ON N2L 3C5, Canada..
    Bergqvist, Christina
    Uppsala University, Disciplinary Domain of Humanities and Social Sciences, Faculty of Social Sciences, Department of Government.
    Brennan, Deborah
    UNSW Australia, Social Policy Res Ctr, Sydney, NSW, Australia..
    Social Policy Change: Work-family Tensions in Sweden, Australia and Canada2016In: Social Policy & Administration, ISSN 0144-5596, E-ISSN 1467-9515, Vol. 50, no 2, p. 165-182Article in journal (Refereed)
    Abstract [en]

    The rise of the adult worker family norm across countries of the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development has created challenges for reconciling work and family life as the unpaid work of the female caregiver can no longer be assumed. The article compares childcare arrangements and maternity/parental leave programmes in Sweden, Australia and Canada that attempt to address these challenges. Sweden was an early innovator, establishing the gold standard' for such arrangements in the form of publicly funded, universally accessible, centre-based childcare and generously paid parental leave, including a daddy quota'. Yet policy development remains open to contestation and change even here. Australia and Canada have shown a preference for market-based solutions although each has taken steps towards Swedish style solutions. In particular, Canadian federalism has left space for such experiments at the provincial scale. The broader institutional arrangements embedded in each country have helped to shape the responses. Yet political contestation, enlivened by the transnational flow of ideas (and ideals), has played an important role in shaping the direction and velocity of change. In the first section we develop this argument, beginning with reflections on how to identify the significance of changes, then moving on to explore the role of institutions, actors and ideas in accounting for these developments. Subsequent sections examine developments first in Sweden then Australia and Canada.

  • 7.
    Moberg, Linda
    et al.
    Uppsala University, Disciplinary Domain of Humanities and Social Sciences, Faculty of Social Sciences, Department of Government. Uppsala University, Disciplinary Domain of Medicine and Pharmacy, Faculty of Medicine, Department of Public Health and Caring Sciences, Health Services Research.
    Blomqvist, Paula
    Uppsala University, Disciplinary Domain of Humanities and Social Sciences, Faculty of Social Sciences, Department of Government.
    Winblad, Ulrika
    Uppsala University, Disciplinary Domain of Medicine and Pharmacy, Faculty of Medicine, Department of Public Health and Caring Sciences, Health Services Research.
    Professionalized through audit?: Care workers and the new audit regime in Sweden2018In: Social Policy & Administration, ISSN 0144-5596, E-ISSN 1467-9515, Vol. 52, no 3, p. 631-645Article in journal (Refereed)
    Abstract [en]

    The professionalization of social care workers is a policy goal in many welfare states. At the same time, professionalization risks being undermined by enhanced audit. The objective of this article is to analyze whether the audit processes adopted in Swedish eldercare and childcare support or undermine the professionalization of the occupations working there, i.e., nurses, nursing assistants, preschool teachers, and preschool assistants. In particular, we investigate whether the three main forms of auditstandard-setting, inspections, and quality measurementssupport or undermine the occupations' ability to achieve professional closure and enhance their external and internal autonomy. The findings suggest that audit processes in eldercare risk undermining professionalization, while in childcare the pattern is reversed: audit appears supportive of professionalization, at least for preschool teachers. This finding suggests that audit processes do not have to be detrimental to professionalization.

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