The current economic crisis and the contextual economic measures taken at European level (such as, for example, the so-called Fiscal Compact) have led to a decrease of the financial autonomy of the Member States and to a consequent reduction in the services provided at the social level in the euro-zone. In this context, it is necessary a transformation of the traditional model of the welfare state, since the reduction of public resources is inevitably reflected on the guarantee system of social rights. The risk of social exclusion and the greater difficulties in the supply of goods and services lead to new obligations for Member States to protect the safety of citizens, as well as consumers. The adoption of new welfare policies must be, therefore, one of the long term objectives of the Union, to strengthen the position of citizens (very vulnerable because of the current economic situation) within a general context of sustainable growth, based on the efficient use of (increasingly scarce) resources.

During the seminar, introduced by the Coordinator of the project, prof.ssa Adriana Ciancio, these issues will be discussed by an external speaker, prof. Gianmario Demuro (Full Professor of Constitutional Law, University of Cagliari), with prof. Maurizio Caserta (Full professor in Economics, University of Catania), prof. Anna Alaimo (Associate Professor in labour Law, University of Catania), prof. Emilio Castorina (Full Professor of Constitutional Law, University of Catania) and dott. Francesca Leotta (Research Assistant Professor in Constitutional Law, University of Catania).

 Prof. Demuro will focus on the new "face" of social rights in Europe at the time of the economic crisis, underlining their multilevel dimension. Prof. Caserta will discuss about the difficult balance between the flexibility of the demand for social protection and the persistent rigidity of labor market. Prof. Alajmo will talk about the social right to work and employment in the Nice/Strasbourg Charter: freedom to work and the right to access to employment services. Prof. Castorina will present an overview on the sustainability of public services within the European welfare policies. Dott. Leotta will analyze the European policies in the field of consumer protection and “consumer welfare”.

 The debate will be an opportunity to reflect on the new forms of welfare in the European area, that undoubtedly is one of the most sensitive area of discussion for Scholars and the biggest challenge that the EU institutions are called upon to face.

For supplementary material about the topic of the seminar please see:

Anna Alaimo, "Presente e futuro del modello sociale europeo. Lavoro, investimenti sociali e politiche di coesione", Rivista Giuridica del lavoro 2/2013

Anna Alaimo, Bruno Caruso, "Dopo la politica i diritti: l'Europa 'sociale' dopo il Tratto di Lisbona", in "L'Unione Europea dopo il Trattato di Lisbona", Atti del convegno 2010





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