Inequality and the Fading of Redistributive Politics

Edited by Keith Banting and John Myles

  • Published: 2013. Paperback 2014
  • Subject Listing: History
  • Bibliographic information: 480 pp., 6 x 9 in.
  • Distributed for: UBC Press
  • Contents

The redistributive state is fading in Canada. Government programs are no longer offsetting the growth in inequality generated by the market. In this book, leading political scientists, sociologists, and economists point to the failure of public policy to contain surging income inequality. A complex mix of forces has reshaped the politics of social policy, including global economic pressures, ideological change, shifts in the influence of business and labor, changes in the party system, and the decline of equality-seeking civil society organizations. This volume demonstrates that action and inaction - policy change and policy drift - are at the heart of growing inequality in Canada.
Keith Banting is a professor in the School of Policy Studies and the Department of Political Studies at Queen's University and holds the Queen's Research Chair in Public Policy. John Myles is a professor emeritus ofsociology and currently senior fellow in the School of Public Policy and Governance at the University of Toronto. Contributors: Robert Andersen, Robin Boadway, Gerard W. Boychuk, William D. Coleman, Katherine Cuff, Josh Curtis, David A. Good, David A. Green, Rodney Haddow, Jane Jenson, Richard Johnston, Edward Koning, Rianne Mahon, Alain Noel, Susan D. Phillips, Stuart Soroka, James Townsend, Carolyn Hughes Tuohy

"The end of egalitarianism? Canada, like Sweden, has experienced the ill effects of a sudden and sharp inegalitarian thrust and a decline in redistribution. This volume delivers a comprehensive diagnosis of what is happening in Canada, but also speaks to the world at large. Readers who hope to identify the smoking gun may be disappointed; but those who wish to understand the true complexities will be amply rewarded by this impressive book."
-Gosta Esping-Andersen, author of The Incomplete Revolution: Adapting Welfare States to Women's New Roles

"The evidence is convincing: inequality has increased in Canada at the same time the welfare state is losing its moorings. This book traces how this has come about and what the impact of this fading social protection will have on specific policy domains and social risks, and more generally on the fabric of Canadian society. It is a cautionary tale of one country's journey from the promise of a redistributive state to the perils of inequality."
-Antonia Maioni, author of Parting at the Crossroads: The Emergence of Health Insurance in the United States and Canada

1 Introduction: Inequality and the Fading of Redistributive Politics / Keith Banting and John Myles

Part 1. Politics
2. Historical Transformations of Canada's Social Architecture: Institutions, Instruments, and Ideas / Jane Jenson

3. Drivers of Increasing Market Income Inequality: Structural Change and Policy / David A. Green and James Townsend

4. Business, Labour, and Redistributive Politics / William D. Coleman

5. Restructuring Civil Society: Muting the Politics of Redistribution / Susan D. Phillips

6. Public Opinion on Social Spending, 1980-2005 / Robert Andersen and Josh Curtis

7. Multicultural Diversity and Redistribution / Keith Banting, Stuart Soroka, and Edward Koning

8. The Party System, Elections, and Social Policy / Richard Johnston

9. The New Bureaucratic Politics of Redistribution / David A. Good

10. Territorial Politics and the New Politics of Redistribution / Gerard W. Boychuk

11. Quebec's New Politics of Redistribution / Alain Noel

Part 2. Policy
12. Health Care Policy after Universality: Canada in Comparative Perspective / Carolyn Hughes Tuohy

13. Income Security for Seniors: System Maintenance and Policy Drift / John Myles

14. The Recent Evolution of Tax-Transfer Policies / Robin Boadway and Katherine Cuff

15. Childcare, New Social Risks, and the New Politics of Redistribution in Ontario / Rianne Mahon

16. Labour Market Income Transfers and Redistribution: National Themes and Provincial Variations / Rodney Haddow

Part 3. Conclusion
17. Canadian Social Futures: Concluding Reflections / Keith Banting and John Myles