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Agency, institutions, and welfare chauvinism: Tracing the exclusion of European Union migrant citizens from social assistance in Germany

Publication ,  Journal Article
Afscharian, D; Bruzelius, C; Seeleib-Kaiser, M
Published in: Journal of European Social Policy
May 1, 2024

What explains welfare chauvinistic policy reform, that is, targeted exclusion of non-citizens from welfare? Existing research suggest that contextual factors like far-right party success, perceived immigration pressures, party ideologies and institutions could spur such reform, but the processes behind reforms remain understudied. This article draws on public policy literature to call attention the critical role of agency and institutions in welfare chauvinist reform. It focuses on a law excluding migrant EU citizens from social assistance in Germany. Through process tracing and inductive reconstruction of the policy process, based on political documents, interviews, media reporting and descriptive statistics, we show that the policy proposal originated from German city administrations; that the city of Hamburg was key in pushing for exclusions; and that Hamburg’s success in doing so crucially depended on the city’s mayor. Several comparable German cities (in terms of party politics and levels of immigration) were equally concerned with ‘welfare immigration’ and complained about problem pressure, but only Hamburg had a committed mayor with the right political networks and institutional resources to lobby for welfare exclusions at the federal level.

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Published In

Journal of European Social Policy

DOI

EISSN

1461-7269

ISSN

0958-9287

Publication Date

May 1, 2024

Volume

34

Issue

2

Start / End Page

203 / 219

Related Subject Headings

  • Political Science & Public Administration
  • 4410 Sociology
  • 4408 Political science
  • 4407 Policy and administration
  • 1608 Sociology
  • 1605 Policy and Administration
 

Citation

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ICMJE
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Afscharian, D., Bruzelius, C., & Seeleib-Kaiser, M. (2024). Agency, institutions, and welfare chauvinism: Tracing the exclusion of European Union migrant citizens from social assistance in Germany. Journal of European Social Policy, 34(2), 203–219. https://doi.org/10.1177/09589287241229326
Afscharian, D., C. Bruzelius, and M. Seeleib-Kaiser. “Agency, institutions, and welfare chauvinism: Tracing the exclusion of European Union migrant citizens from social assistance in Germany.” Journal of European Social Policy 34, no. 2 (May 1, 2024): 203–19. https://doi.org/10.1177/09589287241229326.
Afscharian D, Bruzelius C, Seeleib-Kaiser M. Agency, institutions, and welfare chauvinism: Tracing the exclusion of European Union migrant citizens from social assistance in Germany. Journal of European Social Policy. 2024 May 1;34(2):203–19.
Afscharian, D., et al. “Agency, institutions, and welfare chauvinism: Tracing the exclusion of European Union migrant citizens from social assistance in Germany.” Journal of European Social Policy, vol. 34, no. 2, May 2024, pp. 203–19. Scopus, doi:10.1177/09589287241229326.
Afscharian D, Bruzelius C, Seeleib-Kaiser M. Agency, institutions, and welfare chauvinism: Tracing the exclusion of European Union migrant citizens from social assistance in Germany. Journal of European Social Policy. 2024 May 1;34(2):203–219.
Journal cover image

Published In

Journal of European Social Policy

DOI

EISSN

1461-7269

ISSN

0958-9287

Publication Date

May 1, 2024

Volume

34

Issue

2

Start / End Page

203 / 219

Related Subject Headings

  • Political Science & Public Administration
  • 4410 Sociology
  • 4408 Political science
  • 4407 Policy and administration
  • 1608 Sociology
  • 1605 Policy and Administration