Berlin RESCuE Conference Jan 18th – great contributions and fruitful discussions
About 100 participants met for one day at the Berlin Science Centre WZB to listen to and discuss more than 40 presentations on resilience from all over Europe, including keynotes by Jutta Allmendinger (WZB president), Joachim Möller (IAB director), Mary Corcoran (National University of Ireland Maynooth), Markus Promberger (RESCuE Coordinator). Presentations stretched from anthropological observations among reindeer herders and resulting conceptual considerations from north of the Polar Circle, through welfare state localization in Greece to Polish tenant’s self organisation against a rapidly commodifying housing market in Warsaw. Although resilience is a rare phenomenon, social policy can learn a lot from it: Research confirms the need for a classic welfare state as well as the need for further development, such as maintenance and expansion of accessible and helpful public goods in the known fields of education and counselling, in the neglected fields of housing, water and energy supply, in the forgotten field of accessing and using natural resources for leisure, recreation and material self supporting, and in the emerging field of supported self organisation and participation in civil society. Well reflected enhancements here will be able to contribute to leaving the deficit approach and turn to policies enabling vulnerable households to better support themselves, and expanding support to households who are in need but do not claim for direct benefits. Beyond this, the conference contributions showed that resilience as a concept is successfully entering social policy research.