UCL European Institute


The future of EU Social Policy

08 May 2014, 12:00 am

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Britain & Europe Series. 8 May 2014
Prof Catherine Barnard (Cambridge) on the challenges faced by the European social model, and what form EU social policy might take going forward.


8 May 2014, 6.00pm

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UCL Faculty of Laws
Bentham House
Endsleigh Gardens
London, WC1H 0EG


If the critics are right, the EU social model is dead and that's the end of it. Those on the right may well be dancing on its grave; those more sympathetic might mourn its passing. My view is more sanguine. In this lecture I shall argue that the European social model is facing unprecedented challenges: to its very raison d'être and to its future. However, I will suggest that these challenges, caused in part by the EU's response to the crisis but more generally resulting from a growing hostility towards the European Union project as a whole, are not terminal and that there is a continued role for European social policy. The lecture will examine first, why EU social policy is facing such difficulties, second, the EU's long-standing ability to regenerate and resurrect itself in different guises in the field of social policy, and third, it will make some suggestions as to the form EU social policy might take going forward.

Speaker: Professor Catherine Barnard (Cambridge)
Chaired by Professor Hugh Collins, Vinerian Professor of English Law, Oxford University

Part of UCL Law's Current Legal Problems Lecture Series 2013-14

About the Series Britain & Europe
The relationship between Britain and Europe is a highly contested issue that dominates political and academic debates. The UCL 'Britain and Europe' seminar series examines the relationship between the United Kingdom, and both the European Union and the Council of Europe. The aim of the series is to discuss important policy issues, with a special focus on their legal dimension. Topics to be addressed include the EU referendum, immigration, human rights, competition policy and taxation.

The series is convened by Prof Piet Eeckhout and Dr Virginia Mantouvalou (UCL Laws), and is run in association with UCL Laws and the UCL Institute for Human Rights.