Katedra za socijalnu politiku English
Comparative Social Policy
Study: Social Policy - 1. semester
Code: 86775
ECTS: 5.0
Course coordinators: prof. dr. sc. Gojko Bežovan
prof. dr. sc. Zoran Šućur
izv. prof. dr. sc. Ivana Dobrotić
Basic data
Comparative Social Policy Social Policy - 1. semester
5.0 86775
Lecturer in charge Consultations Location
prof. dr. sc. Gojko Bežovan

Tue 10:00

Nazorova 51, room 11
prof. dr. sc. Zoran Šućur

Mon13:00-14:00 & Thurs 12:00-13:00

Nazorova 51, room 1
izv. prof. dr. sc. Ivana Dobrotić

Thursday 10:00

Nazorova 51, room Nazorova 51, soba 5f
Pete Alcock, Gary Craig; International Social Policy; Palgrave Macmillan (2009), str. selected chapters
B. Deacon, P. Stubbs; Social Policy and International Interventions in South East Europe; Edward Elgar Publishing (2007), str. selected chapters
I. Dobrotić; Crisis and Croatian welfare state: a new opportunity for welfare state retrenchment?; In: K. Schubert, P. Villota Gil-Escoin and J. Kuhlmann (eds.), Current Challenges to European Welfare Systems, New York: Springer Publishing. (2014)
R. Ervik, N. Kildal, E. Nilssen; The Role of International Organizations in Social Policy: Idea, Actors and Impact; Edward Elgar Publishing (2009), str. 1-49
P. Kennet; A Handbook of Comparative Social Policy; Edward Elgar (2013), str. 71-227
B. Palier; The long conservative corporatist road to welfare reforms; In B. Palier (ed.) A Long Goodbye to Bismarck? Amsterdam University Press. (2010)
K. Schubert, P. Gil-Escoin, J. Kuhlmann; Current Challenges to European Welfare Systems; New York: Springer Publishing (2014), str. selected chapters
P. Stubbs, S. Zrinščak; Croatian Social Policy: The Legacies of War, State-building and Late Europeanization; Social Policy + Administration, 43 (2) (2009), str. 121-135
The course aims to provide students with understanding of different concepts and socio-economic and socio-political challenges in the field of comparative social policy, as well as of global social policy and governance, and historical foundations and characteristics of the welfare state regimes. It will provide students with knowledge on up-to-date social policy characteristics and reforms in comparative, international perspective with more detailed focus on the post-communist countries, particularly South East European countries.

Course content:
Comparative social policy - basic concepts
Methods in comparative social policy
Welfare state regimes - concept, development, typical representatives , limitations
Global social policy and governance
Actors in social policy
Social policy in post-communism from a comparative perspective
Social policy in Croatia and South East European countries
Exam dates
Detailed data
Cognitive Skills:
  • Define and explain basic concepts in the field of comparative social policy
  • Apply these concepts to the empirical research questions
  • Distinguish historical foundations and characteristics of different welfare state regimes, as well as socio-economic and socio-political challenges that shape various policy responses and reforms (e.g. demographic ageing, labour market instability, gender equality, migrations, globalization and European integration)
  • Discuss the variety of reforms in Western European and the post-communist European countries
  • Compare the role of different national and international actors in social policy making
  • Assess recent social policy challenges and reforms, and outcomes in comparative perspective
  • Compare and analyse contemporary welfare state reforms and developments
  • Propose future reform steps in the area of social policy
Practical and Generic Skills:
  1. Appreciation of interdisciplinary nature of the field
  2. Written and oral communication skills
  3. Accessing and managing information from several sources, including advanced data bases
  4. Time management and meeting deadlines
  5. Defining problems and evaluating alternatives
  6. Critical thinking and self-learning
  7. Understanding of different cultures and countries
  8. Appreciation of differences and multiculturalism
  9. Professional ethics and academic ethnical awareness
Matching Assessments to Learning Outcomes:

Students should attend and actively participate in classes and discussions, and work on individual assignment (e.g. essay, policy brief, research paper) about chosen topic of comparative social policy in consultation with teachers. The topic of the individual assignment will be based on the indicative readings listed below, as well as on additional literature in line with the topic. Individual assignment will be presented in the class. In addition, students will be asked to read a few segments of the literature in relation to the lectures in order to be able to actively participate in classes (Model A). If there is no sufficient number of students to organise classes the Model B will be applied which demands two individual assignments and oral exam.


Elements and points:

Model A
Attendance at lectures: 10
Active participation in discussions: 30
Individual assignment 1: 40
Individual assignment 2: -
Oral presentation: 20
Oral exam: -
Total: 100
Model B
Attendance at lectures: -
Active participation in discussions: -
Individual assignment 1: 40
Individual assignment 2: 40
Oral presentation: -
Oral exam: 20
Total: 100
* Model A refers to the situation where there is a sufficient number of students to have regular classes, while the Model B refers to situation when there are no regular classes.