Analysing Welfare Policy - Lecture 5
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Analysing Welfare Policy - Lecture 5



Technological Change and Welfare

Technological Change and Welfare



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Analysing Welfare Policy - Lecture 5 Analysing Welfare Policy - Lecture 5 Presentation Transcript

  • Technological Change AWP Week 6
  • Aims
    • To consider the extent to which technological change impacts on government policy and vice-versa
    • To explore claims that we have seen a shift from an ‘industrial society’ to ‘post-industrial society’ or ‘information society’
    • To analyse the implications of technological change for the welfare state
  • Re-Cap
    • Macro, Meso, Micro Factors
    • Globalisation
    • Political Economy
    • Work & Labour Markets
    • Information Revolution
    • Information is the key to the modern age. The new age of information offers possibilities for the future limited only by the boundaries of our imaginations. The potential of the new electronic networks is breathtaking – the prospect of change as widespread and fundamental as the agricultural and industrial revolutions of earlier eras.
    • Tony Blair
    • This [information] revolution adds huge new capacities to human intelligence and constitutes a resource which changes the way we work together and the way we live together
    • Bangemann Report (1995)
    • The world is undergoing a technological revolution and entering the age of the Information Society. [...] The potential technological, economic, and social upheavals resulting from the information revolution could be of the same order of magnitude as those arising from the shift away from an agricultural to an industrial economy
    • House of Lords Science and Technology Select Committee (1996)
  • Long Roots of the Info Society
    • Machlup (62), Touraine (69), Bell (74)
    • Bell - post-industrial/information society:
    • ‘ a revolution in the organisation and processing of information and knowledge, in which the computer plays a central role’
    • ‘ an extraordinary transformation, perhaps even greater in its impact than the industrial revolution of the previous century’
  • Beyond Bell
    • Toffler: Third Wave
    • L’Informatisation D’ Société
    • Pre- Micro-Computer
    • May, Angell, Negopontre, Virilio
    • Castells
  • Network Society
    • ‘ the transformation of our ‘material culture’ by the works of a new technological paradigm organized around information technologies’
    • ‘ the vast majority of societies are affected in a fundamental way by these transformations’
    • ‘ a new type of social structure that I call the network society ‘
  • Network Society
    • Economy
      • global
      • informational
      • network enterprise
    • Labour market
      • flexible
      • programmable labour
      • polarisation
    • Media
      • fragmented
      • fast paced
      • bite sized
    • Politics & State
      • messages/symbols
      • state as network
      • hollowed out
  • Network Society
    • Two forces:
      • ICTs
      • (Informational) Networks
    • Timeless Time
    • Space of Flows
  • Welfare and the Network Society
    • Digital Divide :
    • Universal Access by 2005
    • PAT
    • Computers Within Reach, Wired Up Communities
    • Increasing divide
    • Multiple dimensions
  • Welfare and the Network Society
    • Information Age Government :
    • 100% services on-line 2005
    • (integrated) multi-channel
    • (joined-up) multi-provider
    • 24-7, any time, any place
    • citizen centric
    • timeless time
    • diminished place of space
    • Curthoys: reinvigorate as network services
  • Welfare and the Network Society
    • Economy :
    • ‘lousy’ and ‘lovely’ jobs
    • skill-biased technological change
    • links to rising income inequality
    • running to stand still?
  • Welfare and the Network Society
    • Political Economy of Welfare :
      • Connections with Third Way
      • Repositioning of welfare
    • Giddens:
      • Third Way promotes modernisation and reform to ‘meet the demands of globalising information order’ .
  • Welfare and the Network Society
    • Blair:
      • Beveridge, like most of his contemporaries, was committed to full employment, delivered by Keynesian demand management. The assumption of enduring full employment held good during the 1940s and 1950s… [but] began to come apart as early as the 1970s… Today the assumption has completely broken down. Globalisation has placed a premium on workers with the skills and knowledge to adapt to advancing technology
  • Welfare and the Network Society
    • Giddens – Third Way:
      • looks to develop a wide-ranging supply-side policy, which seeks to reconcile economic growth mechanisms with structural reform of the welfare state [because] in the information economy, human (and social) capital becomes central to economic success
  • Welfare and the Network Society
    • e-galitarianism:
    • social democracy modernised for the information age
    • fragmented (broken?) variation
    • diminished, reduced vision
    • gives due prominence to notion of information society
  • Competing Visions
    • ‘ the paths and outcomes of this transformation are extraordinarily diverse […] there is no one model of information society’
    • (Castells & Himanen, 2002)
  • Competing Visions     USA Finland GDP per Capita (PPP - 2000) (OECD Avg: US$23,178) US$35,619 US$25,240 Public & Social Spending (% GDP – 1998) (OECD Avg: 20.8) 14.6 26.5 Gini Index (mid-1990s) 34.4 22.8 Scientists & Engineers in R&D (per 1,000,000 - 1998) (OECD Avg: 3,305) 4,099 5,059 Prisoners (per 100,000 - 2000) (OECD Avg: 94.45) 468.49 49.55 Poverty (< 50% Median Income - mid-1990s) 17% 4.9% Mobile Phone Subscribers (per 1,000 – 2001) (OECD Avg: 605) 451 804 Key High-Tech Company Microsoft Nokia sources:;
  • Competing Visions
    • Finland: welfare-high tech economy link
    • Informational welfare state
      • heavy investment in education
      • generous unemployment benefits
      • state encourages technological innovation
      • state encourages take up of technologies
      • search for ICT driven efficiencies
  • Conclusions
    • ‘ technology and technological change have not featured prominently as a focus for direct attention in the range of explanatory models for the welfare state which have emerged’
    • (Uttley)
  • Technology: Master or Servant?
    • Technological Determinism
      • autonomous technology
      • soft determinism
    • social construction of technology
    • actor-network theory
  • --END--
  • Govt Services Today Department Agency Local Authority Department Agency Local Authority Department Agency Local Authority Unjoined Back Office Physical Channel Physical Channel Physical Channel Separate, Physical, Govt Service Producer Driven Service Delivery
  • Info Age Govt Services Department Agency Local Authority Department Agency Local Authority Department Agency Local Authority Joined Up Back Office Web Enabled Physical Government Channel Multiple Channel Mixed Economy Delivery Citizen Focused Service Delivery Government Gateway E-government Service Private & Voluntary Sector Value Added Service
  • degree = 14.97% degree = 30.99%
  • sci = 15.45% sci = 25.57%