Scholarly & Social Meeting; Hanna Szemzo: The Hungarian Pension System, 1948-1990. Welfare and Politics in a Socialist Country in its European Context

Open to the Public
Nador u. 11
Tuesday, December 4, 2012 - 5:30pm
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Tuesday, December 4, 2012 - 5:30pm to 7:00pm
We are pleased to announce the fourth and final lecture of this semester in the series
"History Department Scholarly & Social Meeting"  taking place next
Tuesday, December 4, in Hanák Room, at 17:30.
Hanna Szemző will speak about: 


the Hungarian Pension System, 1948-1990. Welfare and Politics in A Socialist Country in its european Context.

In 1951 the so called “general pension law” was passed, which laid down the foundations of a socialist pension system in Hungary. It was followed by many more in the coming decades, changing pension from a very meager provision available for a limited number of people to a provision aimed at enabling all pension-aged Hungarians to lead a relatively decent life. The development of the pension system can be regarded as a clear success in the sense that it greatly contributed to the reduction of poverty among the people and strenghtened, without doubt, the legitimacy of the regime. Nevertheless, it was also a failure, as what emerged as a consequence of often contradictory ideological, economic and political considerations on a state level and the pursuit of interests on an individual level, was a pension system that was very far from the equality, simplicity and transparency originally planned. It also proved to be extremely costly.

The lecture will highlight the milestones of this development, showing that despite its specificities and embeddedness in the particular Hungarian context, the evolution of the Hungarian pension system was also part of the general European trend of welfare state development.


17:30 - 18:15: Presentation by Hanna Szemző.
Place: Hanák Room (Nádor 11, 2nd floor)
18:15 - 18:50: Discussion
19:00 - open end: Drinks and informal meeting of students and faculty.
Place: Central Bistro & Bar


The Scholarly-Social Meetings, a joint student-faculty initiative, combine lecture series with after-hours integrative event. The aim of the Scholarly-Social Meetings is to provide insights into the work undertaken at our department and, no less importantly, to bring our students and faculty together in a more informal way, building up an academic community beyond the day-to-day scholarly activities.

All faculty, students and staff are welcome!
We are looking forward to seeing you all,

Nadia Al-Bagdadi        

(Head of Department)
Matthias Riedl
Jan Bröker
Francesco La Rocca