The century of labouring man has come to an end, and yet governments continue to link social entitlements to the performance of labour. This book argues that the era of market regulation has ended in an era of fiscal regulation: new social and ecomic insecurities have spread around the world, boosted by globalization and flexible labour markets, and compounded by privatization and increased selectivity of social policy. This global insecurity has spawned growing and vastly underestimated inequalities, while governments are making social policy more paternalistic and directive, using the language of duty and responsibility. This context requires new systems of regulation, social protection and redistribution. Guy Standing argues for a complex egalitarianism, in which basic income security is recognised as a right for all, workers' representation is strengthened in new ways, and ecomic democracy is promoted. Work (including community and care work), t labour, must be the basis of a 'good society,' so policies must be judged by their capacity to promote occupational security - good opportunity for all to pursue their own sense of occupation.
Guy Standing is director of the Socio-Economic Security Programme of the International Labour Organisation. He directed the ILO's technical programme in Eastern Europe in the early 1990s and was an adviser to the South African government in 1995-96. He has written extensively on labour market and social policy issues.