Javascript is not activated in your browser. This website needs javascript activated to work properly.
You are here

The politics and policies of welfare chauvinism under the economic crisis

  • Suvi Keskinen
  • Ov Cristian Norocel
  • Martin Bak Jørgensen
Publishing year: 2016-08-01
Language: English
Pages: 321-329
Publication/Series: Critical Social Policy
Volume: 36
Issue: 3
Document type: Journal article (comment)
Publisher: SAGE Publications

Abstract english

The ongoing economic crisis that emerged in the wake of the global recession in 2008, and was followed by the more recent crisis of the Eurozone, has introduced new themes and remoulded old ways of approaching the welfare state, immigration, national belonging and racism in Northern Europe. This article identifies two main ways of understanding welfare chauvinism: 1) as a broad concept that covers all sorts of claims and policies to reserve welfare benefits for the ‘native’ population; 2) an ethno-nationalist and racialising political agenda, characteristic especially of right-wing populist parties. Focusing on the relationship between politics and policies, we examine how welfare chauvinist political agendas are turned into policies and what hinders welfare chauvinist claims from becoming policy matters and welfare practices. It is argued that welfare chauvinism targeting migrants is part of a broader neoliberal restructuring of the welfare state and of welfare retrenchment.


  • Political Science (excluding Public Administration Studies and Globalization Studies)
  • Social Work
  • International Migration and Ethnic Relations
  • economic crisis
  • immigration
  • national belonging
  • neoliberalism
  • welfare chauvinism


  • ISSN: 0261-0183
Cristian Norocel
E-mail: cristian [dot] norocel [at] genus [dot] lu [dot] se

Associate senior lecturer

Department of Gender Studies


Department of Gender Studies
Visiting address: Allhelgona Kyrkogata 14, House M, Lund
Postal address: Box 117, 221 00 Lund, Sweden
Phone +46 46-222 00 00 (operator)
Fax: 046-222 40 04

Faculty of Social Sciences