The severe recession that is affecting the global economy highlights the vital role of unemployment benefits in providing large-scale social protection. How are unemployment benefit systems dealing with this challenge? Written by economists and sociologists, the book presents a broad view of the major adjustments that these systems have undergone over the past two decades in 14 EU countries, and also the USA and Canada.
Significant disparities remain between different countries and different categories of working people, with regard to the quality of cover provided against the risk of unemployment. The changes confirm the contraction, in virtually all countries, of the scope of unemployment insurance in favour of welfare benefits that are contingent on activation.