chapter  3
29 Pages

The Development of Social Insurance as a Technique of Welfare

By 1942, Beveridge had been an advocate of social insurance for more than thirty years. But his position on the proper form and scope of the technique had changed significantly over this period. The scheme of social insurance proposed in SIAS in 1942 was very different from that which had been originally recommended in Unemployment in 1909. The extracts in this chapter are designed to illustrate the development of Beveridge's position on social insurance in the decades before 1942 and in the years immediately afterwards. If Beveridge was an enthusiast for the principle of social insurance, it is also true that he often had serious reservations about the practice of social insurance in Britain after 1911. In this case, the social reformer's vision of what ought to be, sharpened his criticism of what was. Thus, the extracts are also designed to illustrate Beveridge's reservations about the development of unemployment insurance in the 1920s and about the implementation of the Beveridge Report in the early and mid-1940s.