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Webinar announcement: The social contract and the role of social protection in building trust in government and strengthening the nation-state

05/01/2021

On Thursday 14 January 2021 Development Pathways and Act Church of Sweden will be hosting a webinar, “The social contract and the role of social protection in building trust in government and strengthening the nation-state”. Moderated by Gunnel Axelsson Nycander, Policy Adviser at Act Church of Sweden, the webinar will include the participation of: Stephen Kidd, Principal Social Protection Specialist at Development Pathways; Bo Rothstein, Professor in the Department of Political Science at the University of Gothenburg; and, Maxine Molyneux, Professor of Sociology at UCL Institute of the Americas.

This webinar intends to explore the themes discussed in the recently released paper from Development Pathways and Act Church of Sweden: “The social contract and the role of universal social security in building trust in government”.

A strong social contract is a precious resource in any country. Without it, citizens will be reluctant to pay their taxes making it impossible for governments to collect the revenues they require to offer good quality public services to their citizens. Indeed, one of the main challenges facing countries across the Global South is low government revenues. This webinar will explore how countries across the Global South could learn from history and use universal social protection to build a virtuous circle of enhanced trust in government, a stronger social contract, and a greater willingness of citizens to pay tax so that they can generate the fiscal space that enables progressive governments, over time, to offer high quality universal public services to all of their citizens. Arguably, a number of low- and middle-income countries have already benefitted from stronger social contracts following the introduction of universal social security programmes. The lessons of history are particularly important for today’s fragile states which, instead of undermining trust in national governments through the use of poverty-targeted social assistance, should contemplate a change in direction and invest in universal schemes that build trust and strengthen the nation-state.

Panellists: 

  • Stephen Kidd, Principal Social Protection Specialist, Development Pathways
  • Bo Rothstein, Professor in the Department of Political Science at The University of Gothenburg
  • Maxine Molyneux, Professor of Sociology at University College London Institute of the Americas
  • Moderated by Gunnel Axelsson Nycander, Policy Adviser at Act Church of Sweden

Details: 14 January 2021 – 1300 GMT

Watch the webinar here:

Interested in hearing more about some of the key discussions around social trust and its linkages to social protection? Register to attend the webinar here.

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Publication: The social contract and the role of universal social security in building trust in government

Blog: The social contract and the role of universal social security in building trust in government

Podcast: Universal social security and the social contract

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