|Part of a series on|
Welfare capitalism is capitalism that includes social welfare policies.Welfare capitalism is also the practice of businesses providing welfare services to their employees. Welfare capitalism in this second sense, or industrial paternalism, was centered on industries that employed skilled labor and peaked in the mid-20th century.
Capitalism is an economic system based on the private ownership of the means of production and their operation for profit. Characteristics central to capitalism include private property, capital accumulation, wage labor, voluntary exchange, a price system, and competitive markets. In a capitalist market economy, decision-making and investment are determined by every owner of wealth, property or production ability in financial and capital markets, whereas prices and the distribution of goods and services are mainly determined by competition in goods and services markets.
Welfare is a type of government support for the citizens of that society. Welfare may be provided to people of any income level, as with social security, but it is usually intended to ensure that people can meet their basic human needs such as food and shelter. Welfare attempts to provide a minimal level of well-being, usually either a free- or a subsidized-supply of certain goods and social services, such as healthcare, education, and vocational training.
Today, welfare capitalism is most often associated with the models of capitalism found in Central Mainland and Northern Europe, such as the Nordic model, social market economy and Rhine capitalism. In some cases welfare capitalism exists within a mixed economy, but welfare states can and do exist independently of policies common to mixed economies such as state interventionism and extensive regulation.
The Nordic model refers to the economic and social policies common to the Nordic countries. This includes a comprehensive welfare state and collective bargaining at the national level with a high percentage of the workforce unionised while being based on the economic foundations of free market capitalism. The Nordic model began to earn attention after World War II.
The social market economy, also called Rhine capitalism, is a socioeconomic model combining a free market capitalist economic system alongside social policies that establish both fair competition within the market and a welfare state. It is sometimes classified as a coordinated market economy. The social market economy was originally promoted and implemented in West Germany by the Christian Democratic Union (CDU) under Chancellor Konrad Adenauer in 1949. Its origins can be traced to the interwar Freiburg school of economic thought.
A mixed economy is variously defined as an economic system blending elements of market economies with elements of planned economies, free markets with state interventionism, or private enterprise with public enterprise. There is no single definition of a mixed economy, but rather two major definitions. The first of these definitions refers to a mixture of markets with state interventionism, referring to capitalist market economies with strong regulatory oversight, interventionist policies and governmental provision of public services. The second definition is apolitical in nature and strictly refers to an economy containing a mixture of private enterprise with public enterprise.
"Welfare capitalism" or "welfare corporatism" is somewhat neutral language for what, in other contexts, might be framed as "industrial paternalism", "industrial village", "company town", "representative plan", "industrial betterment", or "company union".
A company town is a place where practically all stores and housing are owned by the one company that is also the main employer. Company towns are often planned with a suite of amenities such as stores, churches, schools, markets and recreation facilities. They are usually bigger than a model village.
A company or "yellow" union is a worker organization which is dominated or influenced by an employer, and is therefore not an independent trade union. Company unions are contrary to international labour law. They were outlawed in the United States by the 1935 National Labor Relations Act §8(a)(2), due to their use as agents for interference with independent unions. Company unions persist in many countries, particularly with authoritarian governments.
In the 19th century, some companies—mostly manufacturers—began offering new benefits for their employees. This began in Britain in the early 19th century and also occurred in other European countries, including France and Germany. These companies sponsored sports teams, established social clubs, and provided educational and cultural activities for workers. Some offered housing as well. Welfare corporatism in the United States developed during the intense industrial development of 1880 to 1900 which was marked by labor disputes and strikes, many violent.
A sports team is a group of individuals who play sports, usually team sports, on the same team. Historically, sports teams and the people who play sports have been amateurs. However, by the 20th century, some sports teams and their associated leagues became extremely valuable with net worth in the millions. The Dallas Cowboys are rated by Forbes as the world's most valuable sports team at US$4.2 billion. Some individual sports have modified rules that allow them to be played by teams.
A social club may be a group of people or the place where they meet, generally formed around a common interest, occupation, or activity. Examples include: anime clubs, book discussion clubs, charity work, chess clubs, country clubs, criminal headquarters, final club, fishing club, gaming club, gentlemen's clubs, hunting clubs, military officers' clubs, politics clubs, science clubs, university clubs. This article covers only three distinct types of social clubs: the historic gentlemen's clubs, the modern activities clubs, and an introduction to fraternities and sororities. This article does not cover a variety of other types of clubs having some social characteristics.
One of the first attempts at offering philanthropic welfare to workers was made at the New Lanark mills in Scotland by the social reformer Robert Owen. He became manager and part owner of the mills in 1810, and encouraged by his success in the management of cotton mills in Manchester (see also Quarry Bank Mill), he hoped to conduct New Lanark on higher principles and focus less on commercial profit. The general condition of the people was very unsatisfactory. Many of the workers were steeped in theft and drunkenness, and other vices were common; education and sanitation were neglected and most families lived in one room. The respectable country people refused to submit to the long hours and demoralising drudgery of the mills. Many employers also operated the truck system, whereby payment to the workers was made in part or totally by tokens. These tokens had no value outside the mill owner's "truck shop". The owners were able to supply shoddy goods to the truck shop and charge top prices. A series of "Truck Acts" (1831–1887) eventually stopped this abuse, by making it an offence not to pay employees in common currency.
New Lanark is a village on the River Clyde, approximately 1.4 miles from Lanark, in Lanarkshire, and some 25 miles (40 km) southeast of Glasgow, Scotland. It was founded in 1786 by David Dale, who built cotton mills and housing for the mill workers. Dale built the mills there in a brief partnership with the English inventor and entrepreneur Richard Arkwright to take advantage of the water power provided by the only waterfalls on the River Clyde. Under the ownership of a partnership that included Dale's son-in-law, Robert Owen, a Welsh philanthropist and social reformer, New Lanark became a successful business and an early example of a planned settlement and so an important milestone in the historical development of urban planning.
Robert Owen was a Welsh textile manufacturer, philanthropic social reformer, and one of the founders of utopian socialism and the cooperative movement. Owen is best known for his efforts to improve the working conditions of his factory workers and his promotion of experimental socialistic communities. In the early 1800s Owen became wealthy as an investor and eventual manager of a large textile mill at New Lanark, Scotland. He initially trained as a draper in Stamford, Lincolnshire, and worked in London before relocating at the age of 18 to Manchester and going into business as a textile manufacturer. In 1824, Owen travelled to America, where he invested the bulk of his fortune in an experimental socialistic community at New Harmony, Indiana, the preliminary model for Owen's utopian society. The experiment was short-lived, lasting about two years. Other Owenite utopian communities met a similar fate. In 1828, Owen returned to the United Kingdom and settled in London, where he continued to be an advocate for the working class. In addition to his leadership in the development of cooperatives and the trade union movement, he also supported passage of child labour laws and free, co-educational schools.
Manchester is a city and metropolitan borough in Greater Manchester, England, with a population of 545,500 in 2017; the Greater Manchester Built-up Area is the United Kingdom's second-most populous, with a population of 2.55 million. It is fringed by the Cheshire Plain to the south, the Pennines to the north and east, and an arc of towns with which it forms a continuous conurbation. The local authority is Manchester City Council.
Owen opened a store where the people could buy goods of sound quality at little more than wholesale cost, and he placed the sale of alcohol under strict supervision. He sold quality goods and passed on the savings from the bulk purchase of goods to the workers. These principles became the basis for the cooperative stores in Britain that continue to trade today. Owen's schemes involved considerable expense, which displeased his partners. Tired of the restrictions on his actions, Owen bought them out in 1813. New Lanark soon became celebrated throughout Europe, with many leading royals, statesmen and reformers visiting the mills. They were astonished to find a clean, healthy industrial environment with a content, vibrant workforce and a prosperous, viable business venture all rolled into one. Owen’s philosophy was contrary to contemporary thinking, but he was able to demonstrate that it was not necessary for an industrial enterprise to treat its workers badly to be profitable. Owen was able to show visitors the village’s excellent housing and amenities, and the accounts showing the profitability of the mills.
Owen and the French socialist Henri de Saint-Simon were the fathers of the utopian socialist movement; they believed that the ills of industrial work relations could be removed by the establishment of small cooperative communities. Boarding houses were built near the factories for the workers' accommodation. These so-called model villages were envisioned as a self-contained community for the factory workers. Although the villages were located close to industrial sites, they were generally physically separated from them and generally consisted of relatively high quality housing, with integrated community amenities and attractive physical environments.
The first such villages were built in the late 18th century, and they proliferated in England in the early 19th century with the establishment of Trowse, Norfolk in 1805 and Blaise Hamlet, Bristol in 1811. In America, boarding houses were built for textile workers in Lowell, Massachusetts in the 1820s.The motive behind these offerings was paternalistic—owners were providing for workers in ways they felt was good for them. These programs did not address the problems of long work hours, unsafe conditions, and employment insecurity that plagued industrial workers during that period, however. Indeed, employers who provided housing in company towns (communities established by employers where stores and housing were run by companies) often faced resentment from workers who chafed at the control owners had over their housing and commercial opportunities. A noted example was Pullman, Illinois—a site of a strike that destroyed the town in 1894. During these years, disputes between employers and workers often turned violent and led to government intervention.
In the early years of the 20th century, however, business leaders began embracing a different approach.The Cadbury family of philanthropists and business entrepreneurs set up the model village at Bournville, England in 1879 for their chocolate making factory. Loyal and hard-working workers were treated with great respect and relatively high wages and good working conditions; Cadbury pioneered pension schemes, joint works committees and a full staff medical service. By 1900, the estate included 313 'Arts and Crafts' cottages and houses; traditional in design but with large gardens and modern interiors, they were designed by the resident architect William Alexander Harvey.
The Cadburys were also concerned with the health and fitness of their workforce, incorporating park and recreation areas into the Bournville village plans and encouraging swimming, walking and indeed all forms of outdoor sports.In the early 1920s, extensive football and hockey pitches were opened together with a grassed running track. Rowheath Pavilion served as the clubhouse and changing rooms for the acres of sports playing fields, several bowling greens, a fishing lake and an outdoor swimming lido, a natural mineral spring forming the source for the lido's healthy waters. The whole area was specifically for the benefit of the Cadbury workers and their families with no charges for the use of any of the sporting facilities by Cadbury employees or their families.
Port Sunlight in Wirral, England was built by the Lever Brothers to accommodate workers in its soap factory in 1888. By 1914, the model village could house a population of 3,500. The garden village had allotments and public buildings including the Lady Lever Art Gallery, a cottage hospital, schools, a concert hall, open air swimming pool, church, and a temperance hotel. Lever introduced welfare schemes, and provided for the education and entertainment of his workforce, encouraging recreation and organisations which promoted art, literature, science or music.
Lever's aims were "to socialise and Christianise business relations and get back to that close family brotherhood that existed in the good old days of hand labour." He claimed that Port Sunlight was an exercise in profit sharing, but rather than share profits directly, he invested them in the village. He said, "It would not do you much good if you send it down your throats in the form of bottles of whisky, bags of sweets, or fat geese at Christmas. On the other hand, if you leave the money with me, I shall use it to provide for you everything that makes life pleasant—nice houses, comfortable homes, and healthy recreation."
In America in the early 20th century, businessmen like George F. Johnson and Henry B. Endicott began to seek new relations with their labor by offering the workers wage incentives and other benefits. The point was to increase productivity by creating good will with employees. When Henry Ford introduced his $5-a-day pay rate in 1914 (when most workers made $11 a week), his goal was to reduce turnover and build a long-term loyal labor force that would have higher productivity.Turnover in manufacturing plants in the U.S. from 1910 to 1919 averaged 100%. Wage incentives and internal promotion opportunities were intended to encourage good attendance and loyalty. This would reduce turnover and improve productivity. The combination of high pay, high efficiency and cheap consumer goods was known as Fordism, and was widely discussed throughout the world.
Led by the railroads and the largest industrial corporations such as the Pullman Car Company, Standard Oil, International Harvester, Ford Motor Company and United States Steel, businesses provided numerous services to its employees, including paid vacations, medical benefits, pensions, recreational facilities, sex education and the like. The railroads, in order to provide places for itinerant trainmen to rest, strongly supported YMCA hotels, and built railroad YMCAs. The Pullman Car Company build an entire model town, Pullman, Illinois.The Seaside Institute is an example of a social club built for the particular benefit of women workers. Most of these programs proliferated after World War I—in the 1920s.
The economic upheaval of the Great Depression in the 1930s brought many of these programs to a halt. Employers cut cultural activities and stopped building recreational facilities as they struggled to stay solvent. It wasn't until after World War II that many of these programs reappeared—and expanded to include more blue-collar workers. Since this time, programs like on-site child care and substance abuse treatment have waxed and waned in use/popularity, but other welfare capitalism components remain. Indeed, in the U.S., the health care system is largely built around employer-sponsored plans.
In the late 19th and early 20th centuries, Germany and Britain created "safety nets" for their citizens, including public welfare and unemployment insurance. These government operated welfare systems is the sense in which the term 'welfare capitalism' is generally understood today.
The 19th century German economist, Gustav von Schmoller, defined welfare capitalism as government provision for the welfare of workers and the public via social legislation. Western Europe, Scandinavia, Canada and Australasia are regions noted for their welfare state provisions, though other countries have publicly financed universal healthcare and other elements of the welfare state as well.
Esping-Andersen categorised three different traditions of welfare provision in his 1990 book The Three Worlds of Welfare Capitalism; social democracy, Christian democracy (conservatism) and liberalism. Though increasingly criticised, these classifications remain the most commonly used in distinguishing types of modern welfare states, and offer a solid starting point in such analysis. It has been argued that these typologies remain a fundamental heuristic tool for welfare state scholars, even for those who claim that in-depth analysis of a single case is more suited to capture the complexity of different social policy arrangements. Welfare typologies have the function to provide a comparative lens and place even the single case into a comparative perspective (Ferragina and Seeleib-Kaiser 2011).
The ideal social-democratic welfare state is based on the principle of universalism granting access to benefits and services based on citizenship. Such a welfare state is said to provide a relatively high degree of autonomy, limiting the reliance of family and market (Ferragina and Seeleib-Kaiser 2011).In this context, social policies are perceived as 'politics against the market' (Esping-Andersen 1985). Christian-democratic welfare states are based on the principle of subsidiarity and the dominance of social insurance schemes, offering a medium level of decommodification and a high degree of social stratification. The liberal regime is based on the notion of market dominance and private provision; ideally, the state only interferes to ameliorate poverty and provide for basic needs, largely on a means-tested basis. Hence, the decommodification potential of state benefits is assumed to be low and social stratification high (Ferragina and Seeleib-Kaiser 2011).
Based on the decommodification index Esping-Andersen divided into the following regimes 18 OECD countries (Esping-Andersen 1990: 71):
These 18 countries can be placed on a continuum from the most purely social-democratic, Sweden, to the most liberal country, the United States (Ferragina and Seeleib-Kaiser 2011).
European welfare capitalism is typically endorsed by Christian democrats and social democrats. In contrast to social welfare provisions found in other industrialized countries (especially countries with the Anglo-Saxon model of capitalism), European welfare states provide universal services that benefit all citizens (social democratic welfare state) as opposed to a minimalist model that only caters to the needs of the poor.
In Northern European countries, welfare capitalism is often combined with social corporatism and national-level collective bargaining arrangements aimed at balancing the power between labor and business. The most prominent example of this system is the Nordic model, which features free and open markets with limited regulation, high concentrations of private ownership in industry, and tax-funded universal welfare benefits for all citizens.
An alternative model of welfare exists in Continental European countries, known as the social market economy or German model, which includes a greater role for government interventionism into the macro-economy but features a less generous welfare state than is found in the Nordic countries.
In France, the welfare state exists alongside a dirigiste mixed economy.
Welfare capitalism in the United States refers to industrial relations policies of large, usually non-unionised, companies that have developed internal welfare systems for their employees.Welfare capitalism first developed in the United States in the 1880s and gained prominence in the 1920s.
Promoted by business leaders during a period marked by widespread economic insecurity, social reform activism, and labor unrest, it was based on the idea that Americans should look not to the government or to labor unions but to the workplace benefits provided by private-sector employers for protection against the fluctuations of the market economy.Companies employed these types of welfare policies to encourage worker loyalty, productivity and dedication. Owners feared government intrusion in the Progressive Era, and labor uprisings from 1917 to 1919—including strikes against "benevolent" employers—showed the limits of paternalistic efforts. For owners, the corporation was the most responsible social institution and it was better suited, in their minds, to promoting the welfare of employees than government. Welfare capitalism was their way of heading off radicalism and regulation then.
The benefits offered by welfare capitalist employers were often inconsistent and varied widely from firm to firm. They included minimal benefits such as cafeteria plans, company-sponsored sports teams, lunchrooms and water fountains in plants, and company newsletters/magazines—as well as more extensive plans providing retirement benefits, health care, and employee profit-sharing.Examples of companies that have practiced welfare capitalism include Kodak, Sears, and IBM, with the main elements of the employment system in these companies including permanent employment, internal labor markets, extensive security and fringe benefits, and sophisticated communications and employee involvement.
Welfare capitalism was also used as a way to resist government regulation of markets, independent labor union organizing, and the emergence of a welfare state. Welfare capitalists went to great lengths to quash independent trade union organizing, strikes, and other expressions of labor collectivism—through a combination of violent suppression, worker sanctions, and benefits in exchange for loyalty.Also, employee stock-ownership programs meant to tie workers to the success of companies (and accordingly to management). Workers would then be actual partners with owners—and capitalists themselves. Owners intended these programs to ward off the threat of "Bolshevism" and undermine the appeal of unions.
The least popular of the welfare capitalism programs were the company unions created to stave off labor activism. By offering employees a say in company policies and practices and a means for appealing disputes internally, employers hoped to reduce the lure of unions. They dubbed these employee representation plans "industrial democracy."
In the end, welfare capitalism programs benefited white-collar workers far more than those on the factory floor in the early 20th century. The average annual bonus payouts at U.S. Steel Corporation from 1929 to 1931 were approximately $2,500,000; however, in 1929, $1,623,753 of that went to the president of the company.Real wages for unskilled and low-skilled workers grew little in the 1920s, while long hours in unsafe conditions continued to be the norm. Further, employment instability due to layoffs remained a reality of work life. Welfare capitalism programs rarely worked as intended, company unions only reinforced that authority of management over the terms of employment.
Wage incentives (merit raises and bonuses) often led to a speed-up in production for factory lines.As much as these programs meant to encourage loyalty to the company, this effort was often undermined by continued layoffs and frustrations with working conditions. Employees soured on employee representation plans and cultural activities, but they were eager for opportunities to improve their pay with good work and attendance and to gain benefits like medical care. These programs gave workers new expectations for their employers. They were often disappointed in the execution of them but supported their aims. The post-World War II era saw an expansion of these programs for all workers, and today, these benefits remain part of employment relations in many countries. Recently, however, there has been a trend away from this form of welfare capitalism, as corporations have reduced the portion of compensation paid with health care, and shifted from defined benefit pensions to employee-funded defined contribution plans.
State capitalism is an economic system in which the state undertakes commercial economic activity and where the means of production are organized and managed as state-owned business enterprises, or where there is otherwise a dominance of corporatized government agencies or of publicly listed corporations in which the state has controlling shares. Marxist literature defines state capitalism as a social system combining capitalism with ownership or control by a state—by this definition, a state capitalist country is one where the government controls the economy and essentially acts like a single huge corporation, extracting the surplus value from the workforce in order to invest it in further production. This designation applies regardless of the political aims of the state and some people argue that the modern People's Republic of China constitutes a form of state capitalism and/or that the Soviet Union failed in its goal to establish socialism, but rather established state capitalism.
A market economy is an economic system in which the decisions regarding investment, production and distribution are guided by the price signals created by the forces of supply and demand. The major characteristic of a market economy is the existence of factor markets that play a dominant role in the allocation of capital and the factors of production.
The welfare state is a form of government in which the state protects and promotes the economic and social well-being of the citizens, based upon the principles of equal opportunity, equitable distribution of wealth, and public responsibility for citizens unable to avail themselves of the minimal provisions for a good life. Sociologist T. H. Marshall described the modern welfare state as a distinctive combination of democracy, welfare, and capitalism.
Industrial relations or employment relations is the multidisciplinary academic field that studies the employment relationship; that is, the complex interrelations between employers and employees, labor/trade unions, employer organizations and the state.
Employment is a relationship between two parties, usually based on a contract where work is paid for, where one party, which may be a corporation, for profit, not-for-profit organization, co-operative or other entity is the employer and the other is the employee. Employees work in return for payment, which may be in the form of an hourly wage, by piecework or an annual salary, depending on the type of work an employee does or which sector she or he is working in. Employees in some fields or sectors may receive gratuities, bonus payment or stock options. In some types of employment, employees may receive benefits in addition to payment. Benefits can include health insurance, housing, disability insurance or use of a gym. Employment is typically governed by employment laws, regulations or legal contracts.
A wage is monetary compensation paid by an employer to an employee in exchange for work done. Payment may be calculated as a fixed amount for each task completed, or at an hourly or daily rate, or based on an easily measured quantity of work done.
Temporary work or temporary employment refers to an employment situation where the working arrangement is limited to a certain period of time based on the needs of the employing organization. Temporary employees are sometimes called "contractual", "seasonal", "interim", "casual staff", "outsourcing", "freelance"; or the word may be shortened to "temps". In some instances, temporary, highly skilled professionals refer to themselves as consultants.
An economic system, or economic order, is a system of production, resource allocation and distribution of goods and services within a society or a given geographic area. It includes the combination of the various institutions, agencies, entities, decision-making processes and patterns of consumption that comprise the economic structure of a given community. As such, an economic system is a type of social system. The mode of production is a related concept. All economic systems have three basic questions to ask: what to produce, how to produce and in what quantities and who receives the output of production.
Social policy is policy usually within a governmental or political setting, such as the welfare state and study of social services.
A social welfare model is a system of social welfare provision and its accompanying value system. It usually involves social policies that affect the welfare of a country's citizens within the framework of a market or mixed economy.
Permanent employees, regular employees or the directly employed, work for an employer and are paid directly by that employer. Permanent (regular) employees do not have a predetermined end date to employment. In addition to their wages, they often receive benefits like subsidized health care, paid vacations, holidays, sick time, or contributions to a 401(k) retirement plan. Permanent employees are often eligible to switch job positions within their companies. Even when employment is "at will", permanent employees of large companies are generally protected from abrupt job termination by severance policies, like advance notice in case of layoffs, or formal discipline procedures. They may be eligible to join a union, and may enjoy both social and financial benefits of their employment.
Iranian labor law describes the rules of employment in Iran. As a still developing country, Iran is considerably behind by international standards. It has failed to ratify the two basic Conventions of the International Labour Organization on freedom of association and collective bargaining, and one on abolition of child labor. Countries such as the US and India have also failed to ratify many of these Conventions and a mere 14 other Conventions, only 2 since the Islamic Revolution.
Tripartism is economic corporatism based on tripartite contracts between employers' organizations, trade unions, and the government of a country. Each is to act as a social partner to create economic policy through cooperation, consultation, negotiation, and compromise. Tripartism is a common form of and favored by neo-corporatism.
Social corporatism is a form of economic tripartite corporatism based upon a social partnership between the interests of capital and labour, involving collective bargaining between representatives of employers and of labour mediated by the government at the national level. Social corporatism is a major component of the Nordic model of capitalism and to a lesser degree the West European social market economies. It is considered a compromise to regulate the conflict between capital and labour by mandating them to engage in mutual consultations that are mediated by the government.
Corporatism is a political ideology which advocates the organization of society by corporate groups, such as agricultural, labour, military, scientific, or guild associations on the basis of their common interests. The idea is that when each group performs its designated function, society will function harmoniously — like a human body (corpus) from which its name derives.
Varieties of Capitalism: The Institutional Foundations of Comparative Advantage is a 2001 book on economics authored by political economists Peter A. Hall and David Soskice.
Israeli labor law provides a number of protections to workers in Israel. They are governed by the Basic Laws, the Hours of Work and Rest Law, as well as various other laws, statutes, and regulations.
Gender and Welfare State Regimes is an organizing concept that focuses a country’s traditional social welfare policies in terms of how it influences employment and general social structure. Gender in terms of the welfare state regime varies based on how a nation perceives and acts on the value of gender. Within gender and welfare state regimes there are three central perspectives. The first perspective is the liberal welfare state, which is utilized in the United Kingdom and Ireland. This regime believes in minimal government intervention and promotes privatization of the economy in order to create equality. The second perspective is the conservative welfare state that is utilized in Germany, France, Austria, Belgium, the Netherlands, and Italy. This regime revolves around traditional family values and believes the economy should be structured around status differentiating programs that are earnings related. The third perspective is the Social Democratic welfare state that is utilized in the Scandinavian countries. This regime is characterized by universalism and believes in full employment, income protection and a strongly interventionist state.