Accepted paper:

Pretending to be a good student? - Family policy development in less developed countries after the ratification of international conventions


Keonhi Son (University of Bremen)

Paper short abstract:

This paper aims to capture that states adopt social protection policies only superficially due to international pressure without necessarily implementing the related policies. I will be using a new database containing legislative information about social protection policies in the Global South.

Paper long abstract:

After the simultaneous adoption of social assistance programs in various regions in the late 2000s, scholars started focusing on the role of international norms in welfare development in the Global South. So far, a large body of literature (Berkovitch 1999; Böger and Leisering 2017; Deacon 2013; Orenstein 2008; Schmitt et al. 2015; Usui 1994) confirmed the impact of international organizations on the adoption of social policies in less developed countries (LDCs). However, it mostly neglected the question whether the influence of international organizations continued in the development of social policies. This paper aims to fill this gap. Do LDCs actually implement social policies after the ratification of international conventions or is their ratification just window-dressing? If the 'de-coupling' occurs, why do LDCs even pretend to accept the international norms? This paper will answer these questions using a mixed-methods approach composed of event history analysis, panel analysis and case studies. The first question will be answered by testing the influence of the ratification of ILO conventions on the enactment of family policies and its impact on family policy expenditure in 152 LDCs from 1910 till 2017. The following qualitative research will answer the second question through process tracing.

panel M2
The politics of implementing social protection programmes: political competition, state capacity and policy feedback [paper]