The current crisis in Europe is being labelled, in mainstream media and politics, as a ‘public debt crisis’. The present book draws a markedly different picture. What is happening now is rooted, in a variety of different ways, in the destabilisation of national models of capitalism due to the predominance of neoliberalism since the demise of the post-war ‘golden age’. Ten country analyses provide insights into national ways of coping – or failing to cope – with the ongoing crisis. They reveal the extent to which the respective socio-economic development models are unsustainable, either for the country in question, or for other countries.

The bottom-line of the book is twofold. First, there will be no European reform agenda at all unless each country does its own homework. Second, and equally urgent, is a new European reform agenda without which alternative approaches in individual countries will inevitably be suffocated. This message, delivered by the country chapters, is underscored by more general chapters on the prospects of trade union policy in Europe and on current austerity policies and how they interact with the new approaches to economic governance at the EU level. These insights are aimed at providing a better understanding across borders at a time when European rhetoric is being used as a smokescreen for national egoism.

The book has also been published in German by VSA Verlag, please find here more information.

Further reading:

- Interview with Steffen Lehndorff in Belgian newspaper Le Soir (20-21 October): "Méfiez-vous du modèle allemand!"

- Book review in Work, Employment & Society 2014: 28(5)

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Table of contents

Introduction: Steffen Lehndorff: The triumph of failed ideas

Chapter 1: Dominique Anxo: From one crisis to another: the Swedish model in turbulent times revisited

Chapter 2: Damian Grimshaw and Jill Rubery: Reinforcing neoliberalism: crisis and austerity in the UK

Chapter 3: James Wickham: After the party’s over: the Irish employment model and the paradoxes of non-learning

Chapter 4: Steffen Lehndorff: German capitalism and the European crisis: part of the solution or part of the problem?

Chapter 5: Florence Jany-Catrice and Michel Lallement: France confronts the crisis: economic symptoms exacerbate social inequality

Chapter 6: Christoph Hermann and Jörg Flecker: The Austrian model and the financial and economic crisis

Chapter 7: András Tóth, László Neumann and Hortenzia Hosszú: Hungary’s full-blown malaise

Chapter 8: Maria Karamessini: Sovereign debt crisis: an opportunity to complete the neoliberal project and dismantle the Greek employment model

Chapter 9: Annamaria Simonazzi: Italy: Chronicle of a crisis foretold

Chapter 10: Josep Banyuls and Albert Recio Spain: the nightmare of Mediterranean neoliberalism

Chapter 11: Hans-Jürgen Urban: Crisis corporatism and trade union revitalisation in Europe

Chapter 12: Janine Leschke, Sotiria Theodoropoulou and Andrew Watt: How do economic governance reforms and austerity measures affect inclusive growth as formulated in the Europe 2020 Strategy?

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