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215 x 140 mm, 32 pp
English, 2006/01
ISBN: 978-962-441-178-2

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Squaring the Welfare Circle in Post-1997 Hong Kong
Wong Chack-kie
HKIAPS, Occasional Paper Series
Hong Kong Institute of Asia-Pacific Studies, CUHK

This paper looks at governance in social policy in the post-1997 era in Hong Kong. It sees that governments in advanced societies face the universal dilemma of striving to achieve a proper balance between a rising demand for social welfare and the simultaneous demand to limit public expenditures. The paper argues that managing public expectations is more important than simply finding more resources to try to meet infinitely rising demands. In other words, in today's new socioeconomic reality balancing rights with responsibilities is significant in squaring the welfare circle. Apart from presenting the main features of Hong Kong's welfare system, the paper also examines the efforts of the Hong Kong government to square the welfare circle, and discusses how people regard their responsibility for funding social welfare.

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