Social Policies in an Age of Austerity: A Comparative Analysis of the US and Korea

In response to the global financial crisis, many OECD countries reduced public spending on social policies, with economists now often referring to 'permanent austerity'. Long before the crisis, however, slow economic growth and population aging had already increased the need for rebalancing social expenditure and yet social protection was still far from adequate in many countries. Social Policies in an Age of Austerity is the first major publication on this important topic. The authors of the ten chapters in this book review recent developments in social policies in OECD countries, focusing on the United States and the Republic of Korea, and examining the use of program evaluation in social policies and drawing lessons for policymakers. The contributions cover social and fiscal policy and issues in labor market policy, in addition to the effectiveness of social insurance, education and antipoverty policy. The policies outlined and lessons provided in the book will continue to be valuable to governments, and scholars of advanced and developing countries for decades to come, and to research institutes involved in government and social policy.