The relationship between the state and the voluntary sector has changed significantly since 1948 when Beveridge’s major report, Voluntary Action, was first published. Sixty years later, a group of historians analyse and reassess the impact of Beveridge’s ideas about voluntary action for social advance in this timely volume. Using examples from the UK, Australasia and Canada, this book clearly articulates the importance and significance of Beveridge's ideas on voluntary action within an international context. With the emphasis of governments on the importance of the voluntary or 'third sector' and the development of policies and practices to enhance social capital, build civil society and engage communities, this book will be invaluable for those interested in how the third sector has evolved over time. It will be of interest to historians, social policy researchers, political theorists, economists and educationalists.