The Dynamic Welfare State explains the decline of the classic welfare state and documents the emergence of a third stage in the American welfare state, evident in corporations exploiting markets in healthcare, education, and financial services. Architects of the welfare state envisaged government as the provider of essential services to citizens; however, as the Medicare Modernization Act of 2003 and the Affordable Care Act of 2010 show, corporations and the wealthy have become adept at using trade associations, hiring lobbyists, influencing elections, and contributing to think tanks in order to craft public policy so that it is congruent with industry preferences. Additionally, The Dynamic Welfare State describes the failure of health and human services professionals to advance the welfare of the public, graphically illustrated by the poverty trap, deinstitutionalization of the mentally ill, and the school-to-prison pipeline. A reconfigured welfare state is essential if government social programs are to hor their public commitments for the 21st century. This requires an appreciation for the contributions of nprofit and for-profit organizations as well as the role of capitalism in welfare philosophy. Empowerment, mobility, and invation are themes for a dynamic welfare state that is congruent with the 21st century.
David Stoesz, PhD, has experience in public welfare, mental health, and higher education. His books have addressed children's services, welfare reform, international development, professional education, and social policy. The Dynamic Welfare State, initially a monograph posted on the web-site of the New America Foundation, was expanded to book length courtesy of a Fulbright award.