Academic year
2020/2021 Syllabus of previous years
Official course title
Course code
FM0435 (AF:312029 AR:180284)
On campus classes
ECTS credits
Degree level
Master's Degree Programme (DM270)
Educational sector code
4th Term
Course year
Go to Moodle page
The course provides students with the knowledge and analytical skills to understand the current transformations of welfare systems and social policies from a European comparative perspective.
In doing so, the course contribute to an advanced understanding of social policy paradigms in Europe, as well as to the analysis of the impact of new social risks and of related social, political and economic transformations.
At the end of the course the students:
- Have knowledge of the dynamics of emergence, expansion and crisis/transformations of European Welfare states since the late 1800s.
- Are aware and can discuss the factors at the basis of the rise, expansion and transformation of welfare states
- Can place the Italian welfare system in a European context and perspective
- Have knowledge of the main transformations, since the 1990s, affecting European welfare state (and namely the Southern-European ones) and are able to analyze and discuss their socio-demographic, economic and political components
- Can critically analyse specific policies and their dynamics by placing them in a wider context and by using the analytical tools acquired during the course.
No specific pre-conditions
The course provides a historical and comparative perspective on welfare systems in general and a focus on care policies and practices (in the field of child- and eldercare). The accent will be on:
- The rise, development and transformation of the European welfare states
- The theories of the welfare state dynamics
- The concepts of welfare system and welfare regime with related theories
- The paradigm change of social policies – from social protection to social investment, its origin and consequences
- Care policies and practices in Europe and Italy

The course is structured in such a way as to guide students in the rielaboration of concepts and notions, in the analysis of existing policies and policy proposals, in the elaboration o fan own policy project.
The course literature will be communicated before the beginning of the course.
Students are kindly asked to contact the teacher before the beginning of the course and ask for a Moodle password in order to access al course materials.
1) Attending students (attendance is highly recommended; students unable to attend are kindly asked to contact the teacher)
Assessment is based on:
- Oral presentations (individual and in groups) and class discussions to be communicated at the beginning of the course (20% of the final grade)
- Final paper containing an analysis of a problem or social policy case (80% of the finale grade).

2) Non-attending students (students unable to attend are kindly asked to contact the teacher in due course)
Assessment is based on:
- Oral presentation of two papers/chapters to be chosen out of the course literature (10% of the final grade)
- Oral examination on the coirse materials (40% of the final grade)
- A final individual paper focusing on a policy problem or concrete case (50% of the final grade).
The course consists of 10 seminars of 2,5 hours each. During each session the main topics are introduced and students are asked to critically discuss the relevant course literature, to present one’s own work and to give feedback on the work of fellow students.
Before each session students are asked to read the relevant literature and to prepare home assignments. Home assignments are meant as tools to develop analytical skills: analyzing texts, writing up parts of policy designs, giving feedback to others. These assignments are not assessed, but represent a key element for the writing of the intermediate and final papers. Finally, students are asked to prepare individual and group presentations.
Preparatory readings and assignments are crucial in order to be able to participate in the class activities.

Attendance is highly recommended. Attending students should be present and actively participating in at least at 80% of the classes.
Students unable to attend should contact the teacher at the beginning of the course.
Attending the course is highly recommended.

Attendance consists of:
- being presenta at 80% of classes.
- actively participating in classe (reading the assigned literature and preparing at home, participating in discussions and exercises in class)
- performing the assigned presentations.

Non-attending students are kindly asked to contact the teacher in order to be informed on how to prepare the final examination.

The main language of the course is English. However, students are allowed to give their presentations and submit their papers in Italian.

All course information and communication will happen through the Moodle platform. Students are kindly asked to contact the teacher and ask for a Moodle password before the start of the course.
written and oral

This subject deals with topics related to the macro-area "Poverty and inequalities" and contributes to the achievement of one or more goals of U. N. Agenda for Sustainable Development

Definitive programme.
Last update of the programme: 21/04/2020