Social Policy

The Social Policy group teaches all aspects of historical and contemporary social policy and has a particular research focus on comparative and international issues of welfare, housing, family and migration. A key thread throughout these topics is a focus politics and policy reforms as well as outcomes such as inequality and poverty. Our research has a foundation in Irish social protection and builds on strong expertise on Germany, Japan, Sweden and the United Kingdom. We are engaged in academic debates of social policy as well as more applied research in cooperation with government, NGOs and charities. We are well connected, for instance, nationally through the Irish Social Policy Association, host international networks (INTEGRATE) and are engaged in key European and global academic associations (ENHR, ESPAnet, ISA RC06).

Social Policy topics:

Family and Fatherhood: This research cluster comprises all aspects of family life ranging from birth, marriage, divorce to child and elderly care. Contemporary live of Irish families, fatherhood and care regimes as well as intergenerational aspects of family relations (Prof Tony Fahey, Dr Mick Rush, Dr Stephan Köppe).

Health: Comparative healthcare systems in advanced industrial economies. In particular, safety management and regulation in health and social care (Dr Naonori Kodate).

Housing: Housing covers social housing, regeneration, finance of the housing system, housing wealth and owner occupation. One key aspect covers sustainable housing and the effects of environmental change on welfare provision (Dr Stephan Köppe, Dr Michelle Norris, Dr Nessa Winston).

Migration: Polish migrants in Ireland, racist behaviour on behalf of the Immigrant Council of Ireland, responsiveness of Irish political parties to immigrants, health needs of immigrants and ethnic minorities (Prof Bryan Fanning)

Welfare Markets and Privatisation:  Private welfare includes occupational, family and purely market solutions with a focus on private pensions, school choice and private schools, using housing wealth for welfare purposes and equity withdrawal, elderly care markets  (Dr Stephan Köppe)


ENHR Comparative Housing Policy

International Network of Generational Research (INTEGRATE)

European Network of Social Policy Analysis (ESPAnet)

ISA Research Committee on Family Research (RC06)