Social Policy on the Cusp: Values, Institutions and Change

Brij Mohan
Dean Emeritus, Louisiana State University, USA

Guy Bäckman
Professor Emeritus at Åbo Akademi University, Turku, Finland

Series: Social Issues, Justice and Status
BISAC: SOC026000

Two eminent Deans Emeritus in two different continents unravel contemporary social and public policy issues that are seldom discussed in traditional textbooks.

In a new Dickensian era, uplifting people’s lives amidst faltering social institutions and massive cultural meltdowns, policy discourse is a crucial obligation; it’s a discipline that entails pragmatic vision and prescient planning. Social Policy on the Cusp is a modest attempt to unravel the nexus of nihilism that thwarts even civilization-nations’ efforts to promote inclusive diversity.

Brij Mohan and Guy Backman have analyzed certain aspects and issues in American, European and Asian contexts that unravel intersectionality of problems, people, and policies. Brij Mohan, a policy gadfly, examines the human condition using Nietzschean, Foucautean and Gandhian thoughts that expose the hidden malaise of unhappiness, angst and anger in a globalized world. Social policy as a euphemism, he contends, sustains chaos and resentment without transforming oppressive systems. His five chapters offer penetrating insights into the problems that a therapeutic culture breeds. With an uncanny sagacity, he examines coloniality and post-colonialism as a womb that spells paroxysms of despair.

Guy Bäckman has contributed five chapters, which are based on his research and findings on poverty and inequalities that plague the world today. The vision of a better, cohesive world has guided the design of the empirically oriented chapters in Part Two. Social policy, through the use of advanced technology and algorithmic solutions, promotes transformative policy actions based on preferred values and goals rooted in cultural conditions. In a new political economy, it could become the instructions we write to ourselves to navigate a society that is smarter, safer, and more just. Two invited contributions by Stan Weeber, USA and Eleni Makri, Greece, further narrate the tales of “smart city” and “workplace discrimination” in light of the failed public policies in a new brave world.
(Imprint: Nova)



Volume 10

Issue 1

Volume 2

Volume 3

Special issue: Resilience in breaking the cycle of children’s environmental health disparities
Edited by I Leslie Rubin, Robert J Geller, Abby Mutic, Benjamin A Gitterman, Nathan Mutic, Wayne Garfinkel, Claire D Coles, Kurt Martinuzzi, and Joav Merrick


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Table of Contents



Part One

Chapter 1. Hope and Happiness: A Policy Paradox

Chapter 2. Science, Morality and Public Policy

Chapter 3. The Mythology of a Whitopean Welfare State: la Grand Replacement

Chapter 4. Nihilism: Policy, Principles, and Politics

Chapter 5. Policy on the Cusp of History: Oppression, Modernity, and Colonialism

Part Two

Chapter 6. Post-Industrial Changes and Social Policy

Chapter 7. The Inertia of Changes

Chapter 8. The European Welfare Regimes: The Pursuit of Equality and Sustainability.

Chapter 9. The Nordic Welfare Model and its Social Policy

Chapter 10. Digital Economy and Social Policy: Progress and Risks

Part Three

Chapter 11. Smart Cities, Resilience, and the 5G Revolution: Implications for Social Policy

Chapter 12. Workplace Religious Diversity: A New Global Media Technology Workforce



"Human societies have made enormous progress during the course of the last century, but few seem satisfied with the status quo. Wars, disease and the devastating consequences of intense material inequalities such as prejudice, discrimination and social conflict plague the modern era. Yet scholars of social policy struggle to put forward convincing solutions. Professor Mohan and his colleagues deliver a coherent and credible response to this challenge. As well as setting out a comprehensive explanation of today’s economic and social problems, they provide an alternative way of thinking about the future of social justice as a normative and political ideals. In articulating these insights, this book will be essential reading for scholars and students of the social sciences, and practitioners in a range of public and other human services." - Dr. Mark Hyde, Plymouth University, Plymouth, United Kingdom

"Based on the conceptual, illustrative, and prescriptive perspectives, two bright scholars on two sides of the Atlantic and sharing a common vision of a better world, have combined their efforts to produce this excellent work on futuristic social policy applicable globally... Functional and dysfunctional factors have been pointed out and their outcomes for human condition have been suggested using the European models where hope and happiness is slowly to take the place of despair and destruction. The work is monumental in content and scope and of extreme importance to scholars and students of social policy in different cross-cultural contexts." - Satish Sharma, Professor and Former Director, University of Nevada, Las Vegas, USA

"This is a fascinating book about the possibilities to find algorithmic solutions for the big problems facing today’s politicians and designers of social policy. We are entering a new world with ever expanding possibilities to use digital techniques to solve many of the urgent problems that face contemporary societies all over the world. The authors discuss both the benefits and the risks of using advanced technology to promote the pursuit of equality and sustainability that play such a big role in the public discussion today." - Leif Nordberg, Professor emeritus (Statistics and Econometrics), Åbo Akademi University, Finland

“In sum, the book conveys a strong message that by picking up the broken pieces of society, and through collective effort in reconstructing a new global moral order, that a social policy for people can then be realised.” To read the full review, please click here. - William W.L. Wong, PhD, Former Assistant Professor, Department of Social Work, Hong Kong Baptist University

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