Social Policy | POSO

Certificate of Advanced Studies (CAS)

The topic

The welfare state that was built up in the post-war years is being called into question more and more. On the one hand, an ageing population and slower economic growth have been responsible for the emergence of problems financing the welfare state and questions about its long-term viability. On the other hand, the transformations underway in the spheres of family life and the world of work have produced growing insecurity and thus the growing demands for social protection. The resulting public debate has been strongly polarised and characterised by confrontation.

This course, based on the most recent scientific studies and international comparisons, aims to depoliticise the debate and provide participants with the necessary elements to understand and manage the processes underlying the current transformation of the welfare state.


  • Objectively examine the principal challenges facing the welfare state;
  • Identify how scientific social-policy research can help us in practice;
  • Understand the challenges to the future development of a welfare state and evaluate Switzerland’s path in that direction;
  • Situate and evaluate Switzerland’s position relative to the European and international contexts;
  • Identify examples of best practices in different domains of social policy, in Switzerland and abroad;
  • Suggest potential elements to aid the transformation of social management.

Target audience

  • Students studying for the MAS in Public Administration (MPA);
  • Political representatives and administrative managers in the social and employment sectors;
  • Social action and social welfare professionals;
  • Representatives of political parties, interest groups and not-for-profit organisations.


  • French is the main teaching language for this program
  • More information available on the corresponding pages
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Course Manager
Prof. Giuliano Bonoli
+41 21 692 68 90

Studies Secretariat
+41 21 692 69 17

Rue de la Mouline 28 - CH-1022 Chavannes-près-Renens
Tel. +41 21 692 68 00
Fax +41 21 692 68 09