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Steinebach, Yves and Knill, Christoph (2017): Social Policy in Hard Times. Crisis-Coping Strategies in Europe from 1976 to 2013. In: International Journal of Public Administration, Vol. 40, No. 14: pp. 1164-1174

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Scholarly contributions linking welfare state and crisis management literature still lack a consistent conceptualization of the central matter of interest. To remedy this shortcoming, this article provides a classification of four potential crisis-coping strategies and analyzes the policy outputs of 11 European countries from 1976 to 2013 on the basis of an innovative dataset. The analysis shows that strong deviations from the status quo ante are the rule rather than the exception in times of economic hardship. Furthermore, it reveals a clear shift from the crisis-coping strategy of “Social Protectionism” over “Muddling Through” and “Welfare State Restructuring” to “Austerity” over time.

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