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Definitionen des Begriffs BEHINDERUNG in Europa

Eine vergleichende Analayse

Sammelwerk / Reihe:

Soziale Sicherheit und Soziale Integration


k. A.


Europäische Kommission - Generaldirektion Beschäftigung und Soziales


Brüssel: Eigenverlag, 2002, 262 Seiten




Link zu der Veröffentlichung (PDF).


Die Studie, welche die politischen Auswirkungen alternativer Definitionen von BEHINDERUNG auf Konzepte und Maßnahmen für Menschen mit Behinderungen analysiert und bewertet, ist in hohem Maße relevant für alle, die sich für die Zukunft gemeinsamer Maßnahmen zugunsten von Menschen mit Behinderungen interessieren.

Sie zeigt eindeutig, dass die Definition dessen, was als Behinderung gilt, sich insbesondere darauf auswirkt, wie Menschen mit Behinderungen von Verwaltungen und anderen Einrichtungen wahrgenommen und behandelt werden. Die Studie liegt derzeit nur auf Englisch vor, wird aber in Kürze auch auf Deutsch erscheinen.

Weitere Informationen:

Englisches Abstract

Definition of disability in Europe

A comparative analysis: A study prepared by Brunel University


This comprehensive study which analyses and assesses the policy implications of alternative definitions of disability on policies for people with disabilities is highly relevant for all those interested in the future of collective action in favour of people with disability.

It clearly shows that the definition of what constitutes disability affects in particular the way that people with disabilities are regarded and treated by administrations and other organisations. Let us just take two examples drawn from the European context: different definitions can have important implications for the mobility of people with disabilities, and for their ability to take advantage of one of the elementary rights and founding freedoms of the Treaty - that of the free movement of persons; this freedom of movement becomes even more relevant in an enlarged Union of 25 Member States and in the context of increasing globalisation of economies and of societies.

The definitions and the criteria for determining disability that are laid down in national legislation and other administrative instances differ widely throughout the current 15 Member States. This can constitute a major obstacle to the mutual recognition of national decisions on disability issues, and in particular of eligibility for access to specific services and facilities. Thus, for example, within the European Union disabled people can face particular disadvantages in the field of social security and other rights as European citizens, when they move from one Member State to another.

It was against this background, that the Directorate General for Employment and Social Affairs commissioned this impressive study, produced by Brunel University. On the one hand, the study provides detailed country-by-country and benefit-by-benefit information about national policies which impact on people with disabilities or have a disability dimension, thereby providing an excellent research tool. On the other hand, and in my view of even greater importance, it gives a thought-provoking comparative analysis of those policies and the way in which definitions have influenced those policies.

The study also indicates some of the limits of the 'social model' of disability. This 'social model' treats disability in a more inclusive fashion than the former 'medical model' and moreover incorporates greater recognition of the 'rights' of people with disabilities. None the less, this 'social' model lacks a certain relevance to-day, given modern developments in disability policies, notably the increasing tendency towards mainstreaming, and a growing awareness of the benefits to be obtained by a more individualised approach.

A key message to emerge from this analysis is that the public authorities, including at European level, have an important role to play in shaping society in a fully socially-inclusive way, not least by formulating open inclusive definitions of disability. The study will undoubtedly make a significant contribution to policy follow-up to the European Year of People with Disabilities as it demonstrates that there is considerable scope for exchange of information and policy learning: the study clearly establishes that confusion and a lack of clarity concerning the basic concept of disability present major barriers to the drawing of comparative analyses and evaluations of disability policies and programmes within the European Union. Moreover, questions of definitions are crucial to the development of coherent policies in respect of disability, and to an understanding of how developments in this specific area interact with other relevant policy areas, such as anti-discrimination policies, income support programmes and overall labour market policies.




Graue Literatur / Forschungsergebnis / Online-Publikation


Amt für Veröffentlichungen der Europäischen Union
Vertriebsbüro Deutschland: Bundesanzeiger Verlag GmbH
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EU Bookshop
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Informationsstand: 07.10.2004

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