Kostnader för välfärdstjänster i Västra Götalands kommuner
This bachelor’s thesis examines costs of welfare services in municipalities of the region of Västra Götaland in Sweden. Previous research provided reasons to expect a link between costs of welfare services and demographic changes. Furthermore, Willam J. Baumol’s theory about “the cost disease” also provided reasons to expect a link between welfare services and salary levels. Baumol argues that services compared to manufactured goods tend to become relatively more costly over time due to rising salary levels in the economy. The aim of this thesis was to provide an overview of changes in the context of welfare costs, demographic changes and salary levels in the municipalities of the region of Västra Götaland. In addition, this thesis aimed to investigate if demographic changes and salary levels affect the costs of welfare services. More specifically the study focused on welfare costs related to children and education and welfare costs related to elderly. The study was done by formulating hypotheses that were tested via statistical inference and panel data regression analysis. Our main findings provide support of an increase in welfare costs due to demographic changes, both regarding costs for children and education and regarding costs for elderly. Salary levels on the other hand, only affects costs for elderly according to our study.