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You searched for: Content Type Working Paper Remove constraint Content Type: Working Paper Publishing Institution Minda de Gunzburg Center for European Studies, Harvard University Remove constraint Publishing Institution: Minda de Gunzburg Center for European Studies, Harvard University Political Geography Europe Remove constraint Political Geography: Europe Topic Economics Remove constraint Topic: Economics
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  • Author: Dean Baker, John Schmitt, Andrew Glyn
  • Publication Date: 05-2003
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: Minda de Gunzburg Center for European Studies, Harvard University
  • Abstract: In the last twenty five years, there has been a sharp divergence in trends in the unemployment rate among OECD countries, with some seeing much larger increases in unemployment than others. This divergence is usually explained by institutions that lead to labor market inflexibility – generous unemployment benefits, employment protections, and strong unions – in countries with high unemployment rates. This paper examines the evidence for this view. It shows that there is no simple bivariate relationship between standard measures of labor market institutions and unemployment rates across countries. It then critically examines several of the most often cited studies that support the labor market inflexibility view. It finds that these studies present relatively weak and to some extent contradictory support for the labor market inflexibility view. Finally, the paper presents the results of a set of tests designed to replicate some of the earlier multivariate analyses with more current data. These tests consistently fail to find robust evidence to support the labor market inflexibility view.
  • Topic: Economics, International Organization
  • Political Geography: Europe
  • Author: Volker Schneider, Frank M. Häge
  • Publication Date: 03-2002
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: Minda de Gunzburg Center for European Studies, Harvard University
  • Abstract: Is the state on the retreat? We examine this question through an analysis of changing patterns of government involvement in infrastructure provision, which is generally considered to be one of the primary functions of the modern state. Based on an analysis of the extent of privatization of infrastructure companies between 1970 and 2000 across twenty-six OECD countries, we find that there is indeed a general trend towards less public infrastructure provision visible in all of the countries and that the main factors associated with the extent of privatizations are EU membership and government ideology. We argue that the trend of privatizing infrastructure companies was triggered by a change of the prominent economic discourse in the 1970s and that a rightist party ideology and EU membership fostered the adoption and implementation of these ideas in domestic settings.
  • Topic: Development, Economics, Government
  • Political Geography: Europe
  • Author: Miguel Sebastian
  • Publication Date: 11-2002
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: Minda de Gunzburg Center for European Studies, Harvard University
  • Abstract: Europe has been the driving force of economic policy in Spain over the last four decades and the key factor behind the modernization and globalisation of the Spanish Economy. The accession to the EEC in 1986 was a crucial step in the process of economic and political integration.
  • Topic: Economics, International Trade and Finance
  • Political Geography: Europe
  • Author: Michael Neugart, Donald Storrie
  • Publication Date: 10-2002
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: Minda de Gunzburg Center for European Studies, Harvard University
  • Abstract: A striking feature of OECD labor markets in the 1990s has been the very rapid increase of temporary agency work. We augment the equilibrium unemployment model as developed by Pissarides and Mortensen with temporary work agencies in order to focus on their role as matching intermediaries and to examine the aggregate impact on employment. Our model implies that the improvement in the matching efficiency of agencies led to the emergence and growth of temporary agency work. We also show that temporary agency work does not necessarily crowd out other jobs.
  • Topic: Development, Economics, Politics
  • Political Geography: Europe
  • Author: Marcia Meyers, Janet Gornick
  • Publication Date: 10-2002
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: Minda de Gunzburg Center for European Studies, Harvard University
  • Abstract: A new model of work and family life is emerging out of contemporary debates on social citizenship and the characteristics of the “woman-friendly” welfare state. The dual-earner/ dual-carer model refers to a social and economic arrangement in which men and women engage symmetrically in both paid work in the labor market and in unpaid work in the home. Parents' ability to balance family and market responsibilities, and to allocate employment and childcare-giving equally between mothers and fathers, could be facilitated by a package of state policies. Three areas of supportive policy – all invarious states of development across Europe – include: (1) family leave schemes that provide job protections and wage replacement for parents of young children; (2) affordable, high quality early childhood education and care, to a limited extent for very young children and to a much larger extent for children aged three to school-age; and (3) labor market regulations aimed at shortening the standard work week and strengthening re-muneration for reduced-hour employment. In this paper, we review European policy provisions, and then turn our attention to the United States case. We suggest that embracing the vision of the dual-earner/ dual-carer society may help to draw diverse but unified support for family policy development in the United States.
  • Topic: Economics, Government, Human Welfare
  • Political Geography: United States, Europe
  • Author: Brian Burgoon, Phineas Baxandall
  • Publication Date: 09-2002
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: Minda de Gunzburg Center for European Studies, Harvard University
  • Abstract: Given the underdeveloped attention to political and policy origins of aggregate work time patterns in the work-time literature, and the lack of any significant attention to work-time in the broader comparative political economy literature, this paper has pursues a broad mandate: to bring more politics into the study of work-time, and work-time into the study of politics. Using data allowing better comparison among OECD countries, we argue that study of working time needs to consider annual hours per employee and per working-age person, shaped by a range of social as well as direct work-time policies. We also argue that union interest in work-time reduction is more ambiguous than customarily supposed, with union interests likely mediated by a range of other conditions, especially female labor market participation and female union membership. Finally, we argue that attention to party systems and policy clusters should begin with consideration of Social Democratic, Liberal and Christian Democratic worlds of work time. We support these arguments with cross-section time-series study of 18 OECD countries, and brief qualitative studies of work-time in Finland, the United States, and the Netherlands.
  • Topic: Economics, Industrial Policy
  • Political Geography: United States, Europe, Netherlands
  • Author: Stefan Collignon
  • Publication Date: 05-2002
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: Minda de Gunzburg Center for European Studies, Harvard University
  • Abstract: This paper looks at the macroeconomic performance of EMU since it started in 1999. It argues that Euroland has benefited from a benign environment, appropriate monetary policy and structural reforms. However, there is no institution clearly in charge of formulating coherent economic policies in Euroland and this is reflected in the euro's external value. The paper then evaluates the need for policy coordination, distinguishing between weak and strong forms of coordination failure. It shows that intergovernmental coordination may be an answer to the latter, pareto-improving multiple equilibria. However, overcoming weak coordination failure requires further policy delegation to the EU-level, particularly for the definition of an aggregate fiscal policy stance. Yet, this is only possible if the democratic deficit resulting from intergovernmental cooperation is closed by a European-wide policy consensus. To achieve this should be the objective of a European constitution.
  • Topic: Economics, Government, International Cooperation
  • Political Geography: Europe
  • Author: Carlos A. Rozo
  • Publication Date: 05-2002
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: Minda de Gunzburg Center for European Studies, Harvard University
  • Abstract: From the mid-1980s on a new attitude towards self-determination appeared in Western European integration. With the Maastricht Treaty of 1992 and, later, with the Amsterdam Treaty of 1997 the member countries of the European Community manifested their determination to be active players in the new international order. Accepting and instituting the single market and monetary union constituted, however, a challenge of compatibility between the traditional model of welfare European capitalism and the impositions coming from globalization under the neo-liberal model of Anglo-Saxon capitalism. This issue is examined here under two perspectives. The first reviews the implications which globalization has had on the European model of capitalism and the second the complications for monetary management as Europe moves from a nationally regulated to a union regulated financial structure.
  • Topic: International Relations, Economics, Treaties and Agreements
  • Political Geography: Europe
  • Author: Pepper D. Culpepper
  • Publication Date: 01-2001
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: Minda de Gunzburg Center for European Studies, Harvard University
  • Abstract: Faced with the fact of sweeping regulatory reform, how do companies decide how to respond to a new set of policies? This paper argues that this problem requires a new conception of policymaking: a conception that recognizes the analytical primacy of achieving coordination under uncertainty. I call this challenge the problem of securing decentralized cooperation. Negotiated reforms are a common leitmotif of the current wave of reforms taking place in various European countries, whereas American attempts to reinvent government opt to replace the state with the market. There are general lessons in this approach for both strategies. Unlike the earlier attempts to establish neo-corporatist bargains at the national level in European countries, the success of bargained pacts in Europe will depend increasingly on allowing private actors to design the best solutions to centrally identified problems. The challenges of bringing private information to bear on public policy will increase in the future, and not only in supply-side economic policy reforms. One such area is environmental regulation, which is typically viewed as an area of pure state regulation. This is also an area where market-based solutions are frequently proposed as the most efficient solution to problems of pollution. As I demonstrate through the initiative of the Chesapeake Bay Program in the United States, the challenges identified above for areas of economic policymaking are now relevant to environmental initiatives, even in liberal market economies such as the US and the UK. The extent of government success in such initiatives will be determined by the ability of governments to understand the importance of private information and their capacity to develop private sector institutions that can help procure it. Attempts to replace a malfunctioning state with a market solution, currently very much in vogue in certain quarters in the United States, will fail, as long as they do not recognize the distinctive problems inherent in securing decentralized cooperation.
  • Topic: Economics, Industrial Policy
  • Political Geography: United States, United Kingdom, Europe
  • Author: Mark Aspinwall
  • Publication Date: 12-2000
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: Minda de Gunzburg Center for European Studies, Harvard University
  • Abstract: This essay compares the preferences of France, Italy, and Britain on the creation of the European Monetary System in 1978-1979, especially the Exchange Rate Mechanism, which stabilised nominal exchange rates. My claim is that the different conclusions reached by the governments (France and Italy in, Britain out) cannot be explained by economic circumstances or by interests, and I elaborate an intervening institutional variable which helps explain preferences. Deducing from spatial theory that where decisionmakers 'sit' on the left-right spectrum matters to their position on the EMS, I argue that domestic constitutional power-sharing mechanisms privilege certain actors over others in a predictable and consistent way. Where centrists were in power, the government's decision was to join. Where left or right extremists were privileged, the government's decision was negative. The article measures the centrism of the governments in place at the time, and also reviews the positions taken by the national political parties in and out of government. It is intended to contribute to the growing comparativist literature on the European Union, and to the burgeoning literature on EU-member-state relations.
  • Topic: Economics, Government, International Cooperation
  • Political Geography: Britain, Iraq, Europe, France