chapter  9
18 Pages

A new inequality in the Danish welfare state

The development of immigration and integration policy in post-war Denmark
WithHeidi Vad Jønsson

This chapter explores how immigration became a new political issue in one of the Nordic welfare states: Denmark. It outlines the historical development of immigration and the welfare state. Unemployment fell and wages increased, and by the early 1960s Danish economists worried that increased economic growth would lead to production bottlenecks. The Danish system, where labour-market issues were regulated by collective bargaining between the Labour Union and Disability Alliance, meant that immigration issues were regulated mainly in the political space of the cooperative system. Immigration and growing ethnic diversity were identified and politically negotiated in Denmark and in other universal welfare states as a new inequality which needed to be limited by the welfare state. The chapter concludes with a discussion of the principal questions concerning the inclusion of immigrants in the welfare system and the politicization of the debate about their access to social security.