This paper evaluates why activation programmes are still an important and core component of most European countries’ social‐ and labour market policies when it has become increasingly clear that the employment effects are most often either unknown or very small.
To answer this issue, an in‐depth investigation of the evolution of activation programmes in the specific national context of Denmark is investigated.
Charting in detail the evolution of labour market activation (or workfare) programmes in Denmark, this paper displays the ongoing intensification of activation policies and ways in which this has reduced the living standards of marginalised groups and explains this to be the result of a power block that has a wider intent of disciplining the whole workforce, not least by encouraging more people to work harder and for longer hours, and rarely with overtime compensation.
This paper explains the reasons for the continuing use of labour market insertion programmes when there is a lack of evidence that they are effective in achieving their goal of inserting people into employment.
This paper uses the notion of a power block to understand the reasons for advanced economies persisting with labour market activation programmes.
Lind, J. and Hornemann Møller, I. (2006), "Activation for what purpose? Lessons from Denmark", International Journal of Sociology and Social Policy, Vol. 26 No. 1/2, pp. 5-19. https://doi.org/10.1108/01443330610644399Download as .RIS
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