Social policy, legal and social services in Portugal: new social policies and current debates

Eunice Macedo, Laura Fonseca


This article aims at contributing to understand Portuguese past and present social policies, within a European, global context. It questions the existence of ‘new’ assumptions for ‘new’ social needs. Firstly, social policies contexts and fundaments from the welfare state to the pluralistic welfare and workfare are approached and contrasted, while trying to understand the European social agenda in an age of globalization. Secondly, the new social contract and ‘new’ generation policies are discussed, while privatization, public responsibility or poverty criminalization problems are questioned. Inequalities, Policies of Difference and their current influences, assumptions, claims and dilemmas are also brought into debate. Finally, some recent Portuguese social inclusion policies, their priority areas and plans are presented and debated, and its economical bases are discussed with a focus on human fulfilment and happiness.


'new' generation social policies; social rights; 'new' times citizenship

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"Social Work" ISSN online 2029-2775 / ISSN print 1648-4789