Social benefits and cross-border mobility

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Series Details 17,06.16
Publication Date 17/06/2016
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This Tribune by Frank Vandenbroucke, social affairs adviser at the Jacques Delors Institute, deals with the main elements of the debate on social benefits paid to non-nationals and of posted workers in the EU.

Issues that are relatively unimportant in quantitative terms often weigh heavily in the political debate: the political capital invested in the question of social benefits paid to non-nationals is a salient example of this paradox. However, principles can be important in politics.

Franck Vandenbroucke makes a link with the longstanding debate on posting of workers in the EU. These two debates have been separated. He argues that EU Member States should approach these two debaters from a single, principled perspective. The argument is not about principles for the sake of principles: sticking to consistent principles may ultimately yield better results for everybody.

This Tribune reflects a theme developed in the Inaugural Lecture of Frank Vandenbroucke on 1 June 2016, at the occasion of his appointment as University Professor at the University of Amsterdam.

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