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The number of people aged 60+ is increasing at a fast rate and the result is a rapid increase in the dependency ratio. Alongside the associated risks for the sustainability of public finances, there are many opportunities as older people represent a valuable asset to society. These were discussed at the Peer Review held in Warsaw in October 2012 and hosted by the Polish Ministry of Labour and Social Policy. Representatives of eight Member States, the European Commission and stakeholder organisations attended the event. This report summarises the key issues discussed and the lessons learned. It is available in electronic format in English, French, German and Polish.
The Social Europe guide is a bi-annual publication aimed at providing an interested but not necessarily specialised audience with a concise overview of specific areas of EU policy in the field of employment, social affairs and inclusion. It illustrates the key issues and challenges, explains policy actions and instruments at EU level and provides examples of best practices from EU Member States. It also presents views on the subject from the Council Presidency and the European Parliament. The fourth volume in the series describes the vivid world of social economy organisations (such as cooperatives, associations, mutuals and foundations) as well as the more recent phenomenon of social entrepreneurship, i.e. business created to achieve social rather than financial goals. In addition, it illustrates trends towards greater social responsibility among citizens/consumers, for-profit companies and financial institutions. Finally it reviews ways in which European and national policies support the social economy and social enterprise. The guide is available in printed format in German, Greek, English and French.
The worsening social situation and problems of sustainability of social protection requires action across Europe. The Commission's Social Investment Package guides Member States to modernize their welfare systems by "preparing" people to confront life's risks, thus reducing the need to ‘repair’ the consequences. Harnessing policy expertise, the reform process, shared ownership with stakeholders and EU funds towards social investment will ensure full implementation. This publication will be available in printed format in English, French and German.
If they want to experience economic growth again while reducing their unemployment and poverty rates significantly, Member States must focus on investing in people or "human capital" and make the transition from a welfare state to a social investor state. This issue of Social Agenda focuses on the Social Investment Package for Growth and Cohesion which the European Commission put forward on 20 February 2013. It also looks at people's perception of the quality of life, at the skills that will be needed in the near future and at what EU citizenship means in practice. Social Agenda will be available in English, French and German.
Combatting poor standards of living amongst children and youth, and promoting social mobility in urban areas with poor living conditions is crucial for breaking the transmission of disadvantage across generations. This report summarises the main outcomes of the Peer Review which addressed the topic of area-based policies to promote good living conditions for children and youth in deprived areas (Oslo, 13-14 November 2012). The Peer Review was hosted by the Norwegian Directorate of Integration and Diversity. Representatives from six Member States, the European Commission and stakeholder organisations took part in the event. This publication is available in electronic format in English, French, German and Norwegian.