Munich Personal RePEc Archive

The Debate on the Sustainability of Social Spending

d'Andria, Diego (2008): The Debate on the Sustainability of Social Spending. Published in: LUISS Guido Carli - DPTEA Working Papers No. 157


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The economic and political debate in countries with older industrialization faces a progressive growth of social spending in relation to national products, generated by a concurrence of factors (aging of populations, low productivity in human services, moral hazard), which leads to propose reductions of social spending in favor of other resource allocations. Social expenditures, however, constitute an essential part of the “social pact” which historically united citizens in accepting equalities in political rights and inequalities in the command over resources. The question on the “sustainability” of the choices regarding social policies is open, with regards to the acceptability of economic inequalities and in relation to the ethical themes founded on the recognition of human dignity.

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