Ageing, Old-age Policies, and the Rise of the Welfare State

CFP: a panel at the WEHC, Utrecht, August 2009

Call for papers
XVth World Economic History Congress Utrecht, Netherlands, 3-7 August 2009

Session on Ageing, Old-age Policies, and the Rise of the Welfare State

Aim of the Session

Despite a growing interest in the living conditions of old people in the past, the consequences of the ageing process remains little known. Economic historians have made only modest efforts to study how individuals and society cope with the rising share of old persons that occurs since the 19th century, first in Europe and then spreading over the world as the demographic transition occurs. Contributions to this session will analyze various aspects of old persons' situation: their means and standards of living; their pension plans and their evolution; the way they use public assistance or private charity; and the extent of the family support they may count on.

Moreover, the making of and the rise of old-age benefits is not an isolated phenomenon. It can clearly be linked with the emergence of the welfare state; as national welfare systems overcome both local charity and private organizations. Thus, transformations of old-age policies must be inserted into the more general framework of growing public spending.While focusing on ageing and old-age assistance on the long run, this session intends to replace it in a broader structure of changing public policies. It will consider the ageing process from different angles: ways of living for old people, the relationship between the timing of the ageing process and the size and scope of pension schemes, the competition between local and national assistance, and the rivalry between groups ?- especially age groups -- for the control of public spending; whether using micro or macro approaches.

Jérôme Bourdieu (INRA-LEA)
Lionel Kesztenbaum (INED)
Gilles Postel-Vinay (INRA-LEA and EHESS)

The session will contain 8 to 10 papers. However, 5 papers were already selected during the pre-session process. So this open call aims at recruiting 3 to 5 more papers. Applicants are requested to provide a short resume containing their institutional affiliation(s) and a list of the two or three more significant publications on the subject, and an extended abstract (no less than two pages) or a complete paper, if available. Everything must be sent to [mailto][/mailto] before the deadline.

The submission deadline is April 1, 2009. Acceptance decisions will be communicated soon afterward. We particularly encourage graduate students to apply.

Papers will be circulated in advance, so we assume all papers would be complete on May, 31 2009.

IEHA provides grants for student from developing countries; deadline is February, 1 2009: [url][/url]

Time schedule:
1 April 2009 - deadline for extended abstract to organizers
15 April 2009 - confirmation of acceptance of participation by session organizers
31 May 2009 - deadline for IEHA: names of participants, papers and abstracts.
3-7 August 2009 - WEHC conference in Utrecht

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