Welcome to the European Centre for Social Welfare Policy and Research

The European Centre is a UN-affiliated intergovernmental organization concerned with all aspects of social welfare policy and research. Executive Director is Prof. Dr. Bernd Marin.


New Policy Brief: Active Ageing Index

The April 2015 Policy Brief by Professor Asghar Zaidi (Senior Advisor) summarises the results of the latest 2014 Active Ageing Index for the 28 EU countries. It provides the in-depth analysis of the constituent parts of the AAI and looks at the trends between the 2010 AAI (year: 2008) and the 2014 AAI (year: 2012).
The Active Ageing Index (AAI) has been developed for the EU countries during 2012, the European Year of Active Ageing and Solidarity between Generations. The work was initiated at the European Centre, and its second phase is currently undertaken at the Centre for Research on Ageing, University of Southampton. The European Commission with the support of the UNECE funds the AAI project, and its work benefitted from the advice of the AAI international Expert Group. Read more.

Analysing Equity in the Use of Long-term Care in Europe

As the demand for long-term care in old age is increasing throughout Europe, significant differences in the scope, breadth and depth of coverage for long-term care persist across countries and impact on care utilization patterns. In a new Research Note for the Social Situation Monitor, Ricardo Rodrigues, Stefania Ilinca and Andrea Schmidt investigate whether inequalities in the use of long-term care can be explained by differences in care needs or rather reflect inequity in service utilization. Using data from the SHARE survey for 11 European countries, they find that differences in the use of formal care services are mainly driven by needs (“fair inequalities”) while increased utilization of informal care is associated with lower socio-economic status (“unfair inequalities”). The authors consider possible causes and policy implications for these differences. For further results, please, consult the full report here.

New Publication: The case of migrant care workers in Austria


Andrea E. Schmidt, Juliane Winkelmann, Ricardo Rodrigues and Kai Leichsenring published an article on 'Lessons for regulating informal markets and implications for quality assurance' in the renowned journal 'Ageing & Society' (impact factor: 1.323). The article shows that, in spite of unique efforts in Austria concerning legal arrangements for live-in migrant carers, the sector remains a ‘grey’ area within modern labour markets and a challenging area for quality assurance. For further information here.

Serbian delegation on a two-day Workshop and Study Tour in Austria

On April 9th and 10th, the European Centre organized a Workshop and Study Tour on Deinstitutionalization and good practices in developing long-term care in Vienna and Lower Austria. The workshop is one of the activities planned as part of the SAVE project, a partnership between the European Centre and the Republic Institute for Social Protection in Serbia, co-financed by the European Commission PROGRESS-Programme. The event started with an expert workshop with presentations from Kai Leichsenring, Stefania Ilinca, Eszter Zólyomi, Ricardo Rodrigues and experts from the University of Vienna, the Chamber of Labour of Upper Austria and the Village (Dorf) Service. On the second day, site visits to the SeneCura Sozialzentrum in Krems and Caritas Socialis facilities in Vienna provided insight into the state of the art of long-term care in Austria.

EU Summit on Innovation for Active and Healthy Ageing


Ricardo Rodrigues was one of the speakers at the EU Summit on Innovation for Active and Healthy Ageing that took place in Brussels 9-10 March. Drawing on research carried out by the European Centre, his presentation focused on the main challenges involving long-term care in Europe and how ICT can be part of the solution to some of them. This included issues about addressing unmet need, mainstreaming financing for ICT and potential roles and barriers for ICT use in long-term care. More information can be found here.

Slovenian Minister and Delegation at the European Centre

Minister Picture

On Thursday 19 March H.E. Anja Kopač Mrak, Minister of Labour, Family, Social Affairs and Equal Opportunities of the Republic of Slovenia, together with her Delegation, and H.E. Andrej Rahten, Ambassador of the Republic of Slovenia in Vienna, together with his First Secretary, visited the European Centre at its premises in Berggasse 17. During her two-hour visit, the Minister discussed many issues of mutual cooperation as regards European Centre research with Executive Director Professor Bernd Marin and his research staff.
Please click the picture on the left for the whole delegation.

Towards Coordinated/Integrated Health Services Delivery


Kai Leichsenring presented results of research on 'financial incentives' to enable coordinated/integrated health services delivery at a Technical Meeting in the context of the WHO programme 'Developing the Framework for Action in the Context of the European Policy Health 2020 Implementation'. The Meeting took place on 17-18 February 2015 in Istanbul and gathered Ministry of Health appointed representatives from across Member States, as well as partnered international experts and staff from the different technical units of WHO and its offices.