Policy Concertation and Social Partnership in Western Europe: Lessons for the Twenty-First Century

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Overview

Policy concertation - the determination of public policy by means of agreements struck between governments, employers and trade unions - continues to thrive in Western Europe despite the impact of liberalizing trends that were expected to lead to its demise.

This volume brings together a team of 23 experts with the aim to undertake paired historical and political studies of policy concertation in ten West European countries, which were then subjected to systematic comparative analysis. It shows that overall the incidence of broad policy concertation in Western Europe can be explained by the changing configurations of just three variables.

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Editorial Reviews

Booknews
In their introduction to 23 contributed chapters, Berger (history, U. of Glamorgan) and Compston (European studies, Cardiff U.) define policy concertation as "the codetermination of public policy by means of agreements struck between governments, employers, and trade unions." To account for the varying incidence of such pluralistic policy-making in ten Western democracies, European historians and social scientists go beyond examining the braking effect of market influences to consider neglected alternative explanations such as that of social partnership. These study results are then applied in comparative analyses identifying major determinants of policy concertation in Western Europe as a whole. Annotation c. Book News, Inc., Portland, OR (booknews.com)
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9781571817020
  • Publisher: Berghahn Books, Incorporated
  • Publication date: 1/28/2002
  • Pages: 400

Meet the Author

Stefan Berger is Professor of History at the University of Glamorgan.

Hugh Compston is Lecturer in European Politics in the School of European Studies, Cardiff University.

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Table of Contents

List of Tables
List of Figures
List of Appendices
Notes on Contributors
Preface
Introduction: The Strange Persistence of Policy Concertration 1
Ch. 1 Austria in Historical Perspective: From Civil War to Social Partnership 19
Ch. 2 Austria in the 1990s: The Routine of Social Partnership in Question? 35
Ch. 3 Britain in Historical Perspective: From War Concertation to the Destruction of the Social Contract 51
Ch. 4 Britain in the 1990s: The Absence of Policy Concentration 63
Ch. 5 Denmark in Historical Perspective: Towards Conflict-Based Consensus 77
Ch. 6 Denmark in the 1990s: Status Quo or a More Self-Confident State? 83
Ch. 7 France in Historical Perspective: The Impossibility of Partnership 97
Ch. 8 France in the 1990s: Struggling with the Weight of History 111
Ch. 9 Germany in Historical Perspective: The Gap Between Theory and Practice 125
Ch. 10 Germany in the 1990s: The Impact of Reunification 139
Ch. 11 Ireland in Historical Perspective: The Legacies of Colonialism - Edging Towards Policy Concertation 155
Ch. 12 Ireland in the 1990s: Policy Concertation Triumphant 167
Ch. 13 Italy in Historical Perspective: The Legacies of Fascism and Anti-Fascism 191
Ch. 14 Italy in the 1990s: Policy Concertation Resurgent 207
Ch. 15 The Netherlands in Historical Perspective: The Rise and Fall of Dutch Policy Concertation 221
Ch. 16 The Netherlands in the 1990s: Towards 'Flexible Corporatism' in the Polder Model 235
Ch. 17 Spain in Historical Perspective: Fascist Corporation and Social Pacts 249
Ch. 18 Spain in the 1990s: Strategic Concertation 265
Ch. 19 Sweden in Historical Perspective: The Rise and Fall of the Swedish Model 279
Ch. 20 Sweden in the 1990s: The Demise of Policy Concertation and Social Partnership and Its Sudden Reappearance in 1998 295
Ch. 21 The Politics of Policy Concertation in the 1990s: The Role of Ideas 311
Ch. 22 Social Partnership 1880-1989: The Deep Historical Roots of Diverse Strategies 335
Ch. 23 Policy Concertation in Western Europe: A Configurational Approach 353
Index 375
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