Social expenditure in the 1990s: data and determinants

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Giuliano Bonoli Swiss Graduate School of Public Administration (IDHEAP), Lausanne, Switzerland

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English

This article examines patterns of social expenditure change in 21 OECD countries in the period 1990-2001 and seeks to uncover their determinants. Key trends identified include an overall stability of spending patterns, a marginal shift from transfers to inkind service provision and emergent signs of increased control of age-related spending. Important conclusions derived from a multivariate analysis include the major impact of economic growth, a marked programme maturation effect in fields other than age-related spending and confirmation of the central relevance of policy reform initiatives in the age-spending arena. Although in this period, unlike earlier ones, there is no sign that party ideology influences expenditure patterns, the findings concerning reform initiatives underscore the continuing impact of policy choices on policy outcomes.

Giuliano Bonoli Swiss Graduate School of Public Administration (IDHEAP), Lausanne, Switzerland

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