Community Research and Development Information Service - CORDIS


Europe's 'social model' is facing a crisis of confidence. It is under threat from budgetary pressures, from international competitive imperatives and from a more general concern that it has lost its way and may, indeed, no longer work. Persistent unemployment is becoming recognised as one of the core economic issues for the coming years, but the more complex problem of social exclusion presents broader challenges. Indeed, social exclusion is increasingly being seen as one of the most intractable and damaging problems confronting European society, yet the capacity of governments to respond seems to be diminishing. It is leading many Member States to rethink the roles of their social protection systems, with increasing attention being paid to using the systems to counter social exclusion. The advent of EMU and the prospect within the next few years that the EU will expand its membership to the East adds further challenges.

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