This course is intended as a general introduction to the emergence and development of the Swedish welfare state with a focus on the welfare states importance for social work. The course consists of three parts.

A first part where the historical context and political circumstances that form the basis for the Swedish model is highlighted. This part covers key areas of political economy and welfare policy, social rights, relationships and power relations in the labor market, gender aspects of welfare policy, welfare state organization and distributional outcomes and changes in conditions in the Swedish model.

A second part will cover central parts of the national welfare law. The part of the course covers key aspects of the Swedish welfare law in relation to international law and human rights, with particular focus on children’s rights. The course deepens the student’s skills and ability to integrate welfare law in the context of relevant scientific, social and ethical aspects of social work and to argue and come to reasoned conclusions about welfare law based on different theoretical perspectives.

A third part study social exclusion. Social exclusion and social problems in areas of advanced marginality are analyzed from a perspective of social justice in relation to social class, ethnicity and gender. During the course, there will be a special attention towards youth growing up in marginalized areas. The goal is to understand how social work may contribute and create processes for social inclusion and social change.