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The Foundation for Law, Justice and Society (FLJS) is an independent not-for-profit institution that aims to promote an understanding of the role of law in society. We identify and analyse issues of contemporary interest and importance, disseminating the insights of decision-makers and experts to a global audience through our extensive online resource of free-to-download Policy Briefings, Opinion Pieces, and multimedia podcasts.

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Equality and Personal Responsibility in the New Social Contract

Author: 
Amir Paz-Fuchs
Publication date: 
Tue, 28 Apr 2009

In this report and series of policy briefs, leading political scientists and policymakers examine the role of personal responsibility in creating the conditions necessary to achieve equality of opportunity.
 
Should personal circumstance and behaviour be a determinant in the allocation of resources or should the welfare state be blind to all but individual need? Is the notion of contract a valid one when applied to welfare relationships, and how far should our conception of responsibility extend into the realms of education and health policy?

In his inaugural address, US President Barack Obama declared the need for ’a new era of responsibility, a recognition, on the part of every American, that we have duties to ourselves, our nation, and the world.