The political structure of a number of advanced capitalist economies, according to widely held — but often vague — hypotheses, is characterized by the emergence of “corporatism” or “neo-corporatism”. Speculation that there might here be evidence of a secular trend, reflecting functional prerequisites of advanced capitalism, was for a time influential. However, there would probably now be wide agreement that the phenomena described under the label of corporatism are contingent. The failure of several corporatist experiments and the abrupt return in countries such as Britain to governmental strategies based not on co-operation with economic interest organizations but rather on their “exclusion” (cf. Goldthorpe 1984) and relying essentially on co-ordination through markets, has made it clear that the “century of corporatism” by no means represents a secular trend in modern political economies. Two decades ago, Shonfield (1965, 65) asserted that, notwithstanding the varying institutional patterns of economic policy-making in the countries of Western Europe and North America, “there is a certain uniformity in the texture of these societies. In terms of what they do, rather than of what they say about it, and even more markedly in terms of the pattern of their behaviour over a period of years, the similarities are striking.” Today, this apparent convergence can no longer be taken for granted. As European economies have lost their competitive advantage on world markets and face the problems of adapting their industries to this new situation, governments are confronted with strategic options that are conspicuously divergent.
Weitere Kapitel dieses Buchs durch Wischen aufrufen
- Concertation and the Structure of Corporatist Networks
- VS Verlag für Sozialwissenschaften