The book uses an innovative theoretical framework to explain how the EU social dimension has taken its present form. It presents and applies a political economic framework to the European labor market integration process and offers new tools for analyzing the dynamics of regional integration. The theory is applied to case studies of the EU's approach to social protection, health and safety protection at the workplace, and maternity leave. The topical issues around the future of welfare provision in Europe, how a 'Social Europe' may develop and the political and economic consequences of this are discussed.
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