Setting the Boundaries of Social Affairs

Special Report: Putting the Economy in Order
National Social Budgets and the Keynesian Welfare State (1956–1987)
By Yann Le Lann

This article aims at analyzing the evolution of the delineation work of what accountants recognize as social flows within national social budgets, as well as social protection accounts.Using methods of account keeping, we try to restore dynamics of justification regarding the separation of social benefits from labor remuneration. Based on the essentialization of the redistributive role of the flows managed by social protection, this distinction structures the rationalization discourse of statistical procedures up to the 1970s. However, it has been progressively damaged through the rise of a dualistic approach of social benefits opposing social assistance’s resources to contributory benefits within social flows.

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