SOLIDAR is launching a call for academic papers to help formulate and develop alternatives to the structural reforms that are currently being pursued by the European institutions as part of the so-called ‘virtuous triangle’ (i.e. investment, fiscal consolidation, and structural reforms) as part of the SOLIDAR Social Progress Watch Initiative.


As the European Commission continues to pursue these reforms as foundation for the


Union’s post-crisis economic policy, complemented by its recently launched  ‘Jobs, Growth  and Investment Plan’, SOLIDAR together with its members questions whether this approach strikes the right policy mix and whether it is delivering the right outcomes in terms of maximising prosperity and minimising unemployment for European citizens.


Specifically, SOLIDAR wants to identify reflections that enable the progressive redefinition of the concept of structural reform. Until now the mainstream interpretation has been that that further labour market reforms regarding employment protection legislation, automatic stabilisers and wage-setting frameworks are a viable solution. However, through the Social Progress Watch 2014, we witness only a further rise in inequalities, precariousness and poverty. We want to look into alternative economic and regulatory approaches to be followed that stimulate Jobs, Growth and Social Investment. Please read our background note  here.


To help formulate and develop these reflections as an alternative to the implemented structural reforms that are currently being pursued by the European institutions, SOLIDAR is calling on independent thinkers, journalists, academics, and researchers from EU Member States, EFTA countries, and Candidate Countries to submit academic papers on the issues listed below.


While SOLIDAR welcomes an open discussion and a wide variety of policy ideas, we would like to follow the three distinct understandings of social equality as developed by Sir Tony Atkinson to structure the discussion. The three understandings are: equality of opportunity, equality of outcome, and horizontal equality. Among these, SOLIDAR is particularly interested in policy ideas that connect to improving the equality as outcome.


To further elaborate on the details, we call for papers in the following areas:


  • Areas of investment/Social Investment that reduces/avoids social costs and externalities caused by our current economic model (social dumping, precarious employment, informal economy etc.), that generates societal benefits (sustainable quality jobs, high quality and accessible social and health services and education, social innovation etc.), that contributes to the achievement of the EU 2020 headline targets, with a focus on investment in the social services sector and in education, training and skills


  • Sources of funding for social investment: public and private capital at EU-level and national level, e.g. green taxes, FTT, ETS, MFF, EIB, crowd funding etc.


  • Mechanisms for Solidarity in the EU: EU solidarity fund, EU Unemployment benefit scheme


  • Revision of the EU’s current economic governance framework: in the short, medium and long-term, flexibility of the Stability and Growth Pact


  • Impacts of international trade agreements on jobs and social cohesion in the EU: with a focus on the upcoming revision of the EU’s trade agenda and the EU’s ongoing trade negotiations (TTIP, TiSA, …)


  • What kind of growth/economic model do we want?



Practical information


The academic papers will be evaluated by a scientific advisory group. Successful candidates will be offered 800 Euro honorarium after the final version of their paper will be accepted for publication in the format of a book, foreseen for the second semester of 2015.




The call is open for independent thinkers, journalists, academics and researchers from EU member states, EFTA countries and candidate countries of the EU. Successful candidates will be required to deliver an academic paper on one of the specific topics listed above. The paper needs to be between 20.000 – 30.000 characters, written in font Arial, letter size 10 with 1.5 line spacing. The article should include in-text references and be accompanied by a list of references in APA format.





15 June 2015 at noon


Candidates are kindly asked to send an abstract by this date. This abstract should be written on one of the specific sub-topics mentioned above and should be no longer than 1500 characters, including preliminary conclusions and an outline of the envisaged research method. The abstract should be accompanied by a list of references in APA format and the candidate’s short biography identifying academic credentials and a large, high resolution photo (if possible).


Approximately 10 successful candidates will be invited on 6 and 7 July to a symposium in Turin, Italy to discuss the abstracts and further develop the papers among the selected candidates and members of the scientific board.


30 September 2015: Deadline for submitting the final version of the academic papers.


Beginning of December 2015: Launch of the publication in the European Parliament.


Contact details


Please send the abstracts by 15 June 2015 to and who can be also contacted with further questions concerning this call.