The 1942 report on 'Social Insurance and Allied Services', (the Beveridge Report) was an influential document in the founding of the welfare state in the United Kingdom. The committee chaired by the Liberal economist William Beveridge identified five "Giant Evils" in society: squalor, ignorance, want, idleness, and disease, and proposed widespread reform to the system of social welfare to address these. The Report appeared in the middle of WWII, and promised a reward for the sacrifices undertaken by everyone. Highly popular with the public, the report formed the basis for the post-war reforms known as the Welfare State, including the expansion of National Insurance and the creation of the National Health Service.
Sir William Beveridge (1879-1963), 1st Baron Beveridge, was a British economist, noted progressive and social reformer, best known for the 'Beveridge Report', but also an authority on unemployment insurance from early in his career; he served under Winston Churchill on the Board of Trade as Director of the newly created labour exchanges and later as Permanent Secretary of the Ministry of Food. He was Director of the London School of Economics and Political Science from 1919 until 1937, when he was elected Master of University College, Oxford. He published widely on unemployment and social security, his most notable works being: Unemployment: A Problem of Industry (1909), Planning Under Socialism (1936), Full Employment in a Free Society (1944), Pillars of Security (1943), Power and Influence (1953), and A Defence of Free Learning (1959).
The book, presumably originally in a regular HMSO cover, is nicely bound in plain grey cloth, with the name 'Beveridge' written in faded white ink on the spine. The grey mottled endpapers are somewhat browned around the edges, but the main text block is in very good condition, the pages clean and the print clear throughout with no markings. The title page is tanned, a little creased, and has the name of a previous owner in biro at the top R/H corner. it is slightly torn (about 1 inch) towards the lower end of the angle with the spine. The last page, likewise, shows signs of wear, with some loss at the bottom R/H/ corner. The original staple holes are visible throughout. An interesting book for the social historian. Buyer will also receive a copy of 'Beveridge Explained', a contemporary booklet produced by the 'New Statesman' and written by G D H Cole. This is, not surprisingly, somewhat fragile, but is complete with its paper cover.