Welfare for the European Union in the Age of Globalisation
Text of the Luigi Einaudi Lecture 2016 given by the author on 29 September 2016 at the Luigi Einaudi University Campus of the University of Turin
At the same time as Nazi-fascist armies ranged across Europe, some men – contemplating the future of Europe after the war – focused their thoughts and actions on two objectives:
• to build a system that would prevent countries from resorting to destructive conflicts and war
• to set out the conditions to ensure that all citizens could benefit from more human living conditions and essential goods.
In London, William Beveridge founded the Federal Union Research Institute to promote European unity, dedicated his first book to peace, and prepared his “plan” to introduce the national health service.
At Ventotene, Ernesto Rossi, together with Altiero Spinelli and Eugenio Colorni, wrote For a Free and United Europe. A Draft Manifesto and then gave substance to his social ideas with the book Abolishing Misery in which he mentioned having heard about the “Beveridge Plan”.
In his autobiography, Altiero Spinelli wrote that much of the inspiration for the Manifesto came from reading texts by British federalists.
Books by the Federal Union were sent by Luigi Einaudi to his pupil, Ernesto Rossi, who was confined to the island of Ventotene.
Today’s refererring to the link between welfare and European unity, and doing so through the “Luigi Einaudi Lecture”, aims at paying tribute to the “founding fathers”. [...]