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  Social Europe and Well-Being  




The EU’s aspirations for a ‘Social Europe’ are fraught with difficulties and contradictions, caught between higher expectations for a more social and protective Europe while being hampered in its ability to deliver. People no longer equate the European project with social progress or as an effective answer to today’s challenges. Society is becoming more polarised: widening inequalities, rising poverty and social exclusion, rapid technological change, increased precariousness, intergenerational immobility, and less stable forms of work, are all contributing to a growing sense of insecurity.
Thus, the relevance of the European project is being called into question, in particular, its added value and effectiveness in mitigating the negative impact of ongoing transformations. In response, the EU is paying increasing attention to the social dimension of EU policies. Despite this, the Union continues to face the same old, familiar challenges of limited competence in the social area and permanent resistance from (some) member states to the idea of Social Europe as an unifying goal.
How to square the circle? How can the EU add value to national policies in the area of employment, health, and social affairs? How can Social Europe be made a unifying goal and shared objective for all EU countries? These are the main questions the EPC Social Europe & Well-being Programme aims to address.
The Programme is structured around the following priorities:
• Strengthening the social dimension of EU policies and governance for upward social convergence.
• Towards a modern and inclusive labour market.
• Making European welfare states and social protection systems ‘future-fit’ in the light of ongoing labour market transformation.
• Investing in human capital for greater well-being and less inequality, with a particular focus on health. The EPC’s work on health - mainly through the long-standing partnership with Johnson & Johnson under the CHES banner - has a particular focus on the ethical aspects, especially issues related to access, affordability and patient choice.
The activities under this Programme are closely integrated with other EPC focus areas, especially those related to migration and the economy, with a view to providing more ‘joined-up’ policy solutions.
The EU’s aspirations for a ‘Social Europe’ are fraught with difficulties and contradictions, caught between higher expectations for a more social and protective Europe while being hampered in its ability to deliver. People no longer equate the European project with social progress or as an effective answer to today’s challenges. Society is becoming more polarised: widening inequalities, rising poverty and social exclusion, rapid technological change, increased precariousness, intergenerational immobility, and less stable forms of work, are all contributing to a growing sense of insecurity.

Publications

Social investment / POLICY BRIEF
Financing social investment for an economy of well-being: Moving from good practices to a paradigm shift
By Connecting Europe Claire Dhéret , Marta Pilati - 16/07/2019
Future of Europe / BOOK
Yes, we should!
By - 18/04/2019
Integration / DISCUSSION PAPER
Integrating refugees into the labour market: How can the EU better support employers?
By Connecting Europe Claire Dhéret , Olivia Sundberg Diez - 21/02/2019

Contributions

Future of work / ROUNDTABLE
Future of Work

Claire Dhéret gave a presentation to the members of the World Confederation of Employment on 2 October 2019 where she presented her views on the future design of social protection systems.



Future of Work
02 October 2019 - Brussels,
World Confederation of Employment
Labour market / PANEL DISCUSSION
Investing in Millenials and Gen Z skills and wellbeing
Claire Dhéret moderated a session of the European Days for Research & Innovation on 26 September 2019. The session was entitled ‘Investing in Millenials and Gen Z skills and well-being’ and was collecting young people’s views on the future world of work.

Investing in Millenials and Gen Z skills and wellbeing
26 September 2019 - Brussels,
European Days for Research and Innovation
Future of work / ROUNDTABLE
The impact of new technologies on the European security and defence college
Claire Dhéret gave a presentation to the members of the European security and defence college on 18 September 2019 where she presented the EPC work on the impact of new technologies on the European armed forces.

The impact of new technologies on the European security and defence college
18 September 2019 - Brussels,
European security and defence college

team

Head of Social Europe and Well-Being Programme and Senior Policy Analyst
Expertise:
European social model(s), employment and social policies, mobility of EU workers, EU health policies & health systems, EU governance, EU cohesion policy, industrial policy, and the EU budget.

Policy Analyst
Expertise:
Health & healthcare, CHES - Coalition for Health, Ethics and Society, Social dimension of EU policies
Junior Policy Analyst
Expertise:
Future of Work, European Social Policy (special focus: Employment Policy), Central and Eastern European Welfare States
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