From the 1980s onwards, governments began to rediscover the benefits of the market as an alternative governance mechanism for allocation in systems of social provisions. Yet, if social policy regimes are delegated the task of providing goods and services that are not easily produced by the market itself, it is clear that they need more complex institutions to support them in producing these goods and services. This study contains a comparative institutional analysis of the politics and policies of market-oriented reforms in Dutch social housing and health care. Theoretically and empirically, the book aims to contribute to our understanding of the challenges confronting contemporary policy-makers in different sectors of mature welfare states. For this purpose, the author develops an innovative framework for institutional policy analysis which is build upon two logistics of social policy: the provision logic of social goods and services, which refers to the primary process of providing the goods and services at stake, and the institutional logic of social policy regimes, which touches upon the historical context in which social policy regimes and their governance arrangements became embedded and developed over time. In the concluding chapter, the book aims to a rethinking welfare state reform on the basis of the inherent difficulties in managing market-led reforms and associational cooperation in service intensive welfare sectors within the Dutch welfare state. Instead of conceptualizing the state, the market and the community as mutually exclusive institutional orders, the author concludes that we should ask how and to what extent these different institutional orders might contribute in meeting the shortcomings of the other.

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J. van der Schaar (Jan) , T.E.D. van der Grinten (Tom)
Erasmus University Rotterdam
Erasmus School of Health Policy & Management (ESHPM)

Helderman, J-K. (2007, October 11). Bringing the Market Back In? Institutional complementarity and hierarchy in Dutch housing and health care. Erasmus University Rotterdam. Retrieved from