Social Democracy vs. Socialism a Brief Explanation


What are the concepts of Social Democracy?

Social democracy is the idea that the state needs to provide security and equality of opportunity for its people and should actively reorder society in a way that is conducive to such developments, but that such changes should be brought about gradually, legitimated by a democratically elected majority. In short, Social democracy is a government system that has similar values to socialism, but within a capitalist framework. Now, A Social Democratic government has the main priority of protecting workers’ human rights while creating an atmosphere where the private and public enterprise prospers.

In the last two decades, Social Democracies have been advocating and embracing green conservationism, economic and social interventions to promote social justice within the framework of liberal-democratic institutions and a capitalist-oriented mixed economy.

The main countries that have embraced social democracy are the Nordic countries, United Kingdom and Germany. The United Nations published in 2018 a global report ranking of the happiest countries in the world. The top five, in order, were (1) Finland, (2) Norway, (3) Denmark, (4) Iceland, and (5) Switzerland, all with a Social Democracy Economy.

Example of a Social Democracy Political Parties with strong influence in their countries

The Labour Party of United Kingdom

The Labour Party is a center-left political party in the United Kingdom that has been described as an alliance of social democrats, democratic socialists, and trade unionists.

Social Democratic Party of Germany

The Social Democratic Party of Germany is a social-democratic political party in Germany. Led by Saskia Esken and Norbert Walter-Borjans since 2019, the party is one of the two major contemporary political parties in Germany along with the Christian Democratic Union.


What is the Concept of Socialism?

Socialism is a range of economic and social systems characterized by social ownership of the means of production and workers’ self-management as well as the political theories and movements associated with them. Social ownership can be public, collective, or cooperative ownership or citizen ownership of equity. There are many varieties of socialism and there is no single definition encapsulating all of them, with social ownership being the common element shared by its various forms. Only in the last 15 years, Socialist countries have embraced the private sector on a small scale as the government controls all economic aspects.

Example of Socialist Countries

The Republic of Cuba and Korea are some of the world’s last remaining socialist countries following the Marxist–Leninist ideology.

Source: Wikipedia, Microsoft Research

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