This biennial conference is the country's leading event for the discussion and dissemination of social policy and aims to bring together researchers, practitioners and policy makers from across disciplines and provides an opportunity to explore research and practice.
Since the Global Financial Crisis, the overall direction of social policy is towards more targeting, more user-pays, more activation, less entitlement and more punitive sanctions. Growing inequality is increasingly accepted as an immutable characteristic of the modern welfare state. These trends are a matter of grave concern for the more vulnerable members of society and for those working with them. In this context the debates around rights and entitlements have become increasingly intense and hard fought. The importance of learning from each other’s experience is crucial for addressing the challenges of maintaining rights and entitlements in the face of global austerity.