The aim of the course is to explore the processes of establishing and changing social policy as part of the wider network of state policies. In the first part of the seminar, the focus will be on those factors of the political system that favor the adoption and accelerate the development of a social policy. These include the political parties and trade unions that shape the state policy agenda, the political ideologies that shape the content of state policy, and finally the state bureaucracy. In the second part of the seminar, we will tackle the factors that determine the limits and scope of change in social policy and which are located mainly within the institutional environment. Finally, the third part of the seminar will study the reformulation of the content of social policy in the context of capitalist restructuring, as it is understood in the literature on varieties of capitalism. In this context, we will check the basic tenets of this literature against the cases of Latin America, South East Asia and the U.S.