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Back | Programme Area: Social Dimensions of Sustainable Development

New Directions in Social Policy - A Side Event at the Commission for Social Development

Date: 6 Feb 2013

  • Time: 13:15 - 14:30
  • Location: Conference Room B, North Lawn Building, UN Headquarters
  • Counterpart(s): Ministry for Foreign Affairs of Finland

New Directions in Social Policy - A Side Event at the Commission for Social Development
Around the world, social policies are evolving or transforming in response to new risks and challenges that were not faced by European welfare states in their developmental phase.
While the MDGs placed social issues more firmly back on the development agenda, social policy has remained largely residual – principally as protection against severe forms of adversity. However, recent innovations in social policy and practice in the global South offer more universal, participatory and potentially transformative approaches. We see expanding coverage and service provision, enhanced redistribution and inclusion, increased mobilization of domestic resources, and efforts to address structural inequalities and strengthen social rights.

What can we learn from these new approaches? Are we seeing the basis of new solidarity-based social contracts that can generate more inclusive, equitable societies and sustainable development paths?

This side event will consider emerging directions in social policy, particularly in the South, what we can learn from them, and how this should be reflected in a new global development agenda.


Sarah Cook, Director, UNRISD
Clem McCartney, Content Coordinator, Shared Societies Project, Club de Madrid
Michael Cichon, President, International Council for Social Welfare (ICSW)
Diana Alarcón, Development Policy and Analysis Division, UNDESA
Timo Voipio, Senior Adviser for Social Policy and Decent Work, Ministry for Foreign Affairs, Finland