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Jones, Erik

Economic Adjustment and Political Transformation in Small States

Jones, Erik - Economic Adjustment and Political Transformation in Small States, ebook

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ISBN: 9780191549038
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This book offers a provocative argument about the impact of political change on the economic strategies of small states, focusing on Belgium and the Netherlands. It argues that a transformation in the style of politics from consensus to competition has constrained the traditional formulas for economic policymaking. - ;The smaller countries of Western Europe have a reputation for being more successful than their larger neighbours. They are wealthier per capita, they are more stable politically, and they are more flexible economically. The secret to this success lies in their consensual style of politics and their corporatist style of decision-making. Unfortunately, however, that may be about to change. A political transformation underway in small states is undermining the politics of consensus
and breakdown the effectiveness of corporatist institutions. Small countries are becoming increasingly vulnerable to the vicissitudes of world markets as a result.

Belgium and the Netherlands offer clear examples of the problem at hand. The political societies of both countries were tightly organized to avoid conflict and to promote consensus. Over time, however, this tight organization has broken down, politicians have opted for conflict over consensus, and elections have become more volatile as a result. In turn, this political transformation of Belgium and the Netherlands has undermined their traditional approach to economic policymaking and
economic adjustment. Belgium and the Netherlands are now more vulnerable to world market forces than at any time since the end of the 1970s. Their relative economic and political success can no longer be taken for granted. The relative success of other small states should be brought into question as
well. -

Keywords: BUSINESS & ECONOMICS / General BUS000000

Author(s)
Publisher
Oxford University Press
Publication year
2008
Language
en
Edition
1
Category
Economy
Format
Ebook
eISBN (PDF)
9780191549038

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