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A European employment policy without politics: How European bureaucrats used expertise as power expansion

Caune, Helene (2011) A European employment policy without politics: How European bureaucrats used expertise as power expansion. UNSPECIFIED.

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    This paper investigates how a policy-model articulates two streams that have long been considered by both academics and political stakeholders as mutually exclusive. The European employment flexicurity model explicitly combines flexibility (on the labour markets) and security (for the workers). It clarifies European objectives in the social and employment policy field centred on a mutually reinforcing vision of the employers’ and employees’ rights and duties. At both European and domestic levels, various political actors (trade unions, employers’ representative, political leaders) have endorsed the need for policy-reforms centred on the structuring elements of the European flexicurity model (flexibilisation of employment contracts; active labour market policies; life-long learning schemes; modernization of social security schemes). This paper shows that the construction of this policy-model was not the result of a political process. Politics (domestic uploading strategies, political leaders and political parties, etc.) cannot explain the emergence of the European flexicurity model. Rather, the alliance between academic experts and a few actors in the directorate general of employment affairs of the Commission took the lead over political mobilization. The use of national policy comparisons in European reports and policy documents allowed the directorate of employment and social affairs to expand its legitimacy within the Commission and among national actors.

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    Item Type: Other
    Subjects for non-EU documents: EU policies and themes > Policies & related activities > employment/labour market
    Subjects for EU documents: UNSPECIFIED
    EU Series and Periodicals: UNSPECIFIED
    EU Annual Reports: UNSPECIFIED
    Depositing User: Phil Wilkin
    Official EU Document: No
    Language: English
    Date Deposited: 05 Nov 2019 11:33
    Number of Pages: 31
    Last Modified: 05 Nov 2019 11:33

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