Individualization of social inequality and capabilities policies

Author/s Marco Ruffino
Publishing Year 2011 Issue 2010/120
Language Italian Pages 16 P. 34-49 File size 289 KB
DOI 10.3280/SL2010-120003
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The article examines critically the capabilities approach in the framework of active welfare policies, according to the "weak paradigm" of knowledge economy. Focussing the attention on the link between capabilities and learning put in evidence two kind of risks: i) a major individualization of inequality, if capabilities lay the ground for social conflict, which reproduces, instead of correcting the initial conversion handicaps; ii) the reduction of substantive freedom, if the right to learn shifts to an obligation of adaptation. The capabilities approach remains undoubtedly essential, but requires to strike a balance between individual and institutional responsibilities. Some evidences regarding Europe and Italy show the necessity to move towards "capacitant institutions", as a condition for using this approach to develop a real individual freedom of choice.

Keywords: Cognitive capabilities; active welfare; inequalities; conversion handicaps; individualization; learning policies

Marco Ruffino, Individualizzazione della diseguaglianza sociale e politiche delle capacitazioni in "SOCIOLOGIA DEL LAVORO " 120/2010, pp 34-49, DOI: 10.3280/SL2010-120003