Policy Concertation and Social Partnership in Western Europe
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Policy Concertation and Social Partnership in Western Europe

Lessons for the Twenty-first Century
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Stefan Berger
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Policy concertation - the determination of public policy by means of agreements struck between governments, employers and trade unions - continues to thrive in Western Europe despite the impact of liberalizing trends that were expected to lead to its demise.

This volume brings together a team of 23 experts with the aim to undertake paired historical and political studies of policy concertation in ten West European countries, which were then subjected to systematic comparative analysis. It shows that overall the incidence of broad policy concertation in Western Europe can be explained by the changing configurations of just three variables.

Introduction: The Strange Persistence of Policy Concertation
Hugh Compston


Chapter 1. Austria in Historical Perspective: From Civil War to Social Partnership
Jill Lewis

Chapter 2. Austria in the 1990s: The Routine of Social Partnership in Question?
Emmerich Tálos and Bernhard Kittel

Chapter 3. Britain in Historical Perspective: From War Concertation to the Destruction of the Social Contract
Chris Williams

Chapter 4. Britain in the 1990s: The Absence of Policy Concertation
Peter Dorey

Chapter 5. Denmark in Historical Perspective: Towards Conflict-Based Consensus
Carsten Strøby Jensen

Chapter 6. Denmark in the 1990s: Status Quo or a More Self-Confident State?
Mikkel Mailand

Chapter 7. France in Historical Perspective: The Impossibility of Partnership
Susan Milner

Chapter 8. France in the 1990s: Struggling with the Weight of History
Nick Parsons

Chapter 9. Germany in Historical Perspective: The Gap Between Theory and Practice
Stefan Berger

Chapter 10. Germany in the 1990s: The Impact of Reunification
Jeremy Leaman

Chapter 11. Ireland in Historical Perspective: The Legacies of Colonialism – Edging Towards Policy Concertation
Emmet O'Connor

Chapter 12. Ireland in the 1990s: Policy Concertation Triumphant
Rory O'Donnell and Damian Thomas

Chapter 13. Italy in Historical Perspective: The Legacies of Fascism and Anti-Fascism
Gino Bedani

Chapter 14. Italy in the 1990s: Policy Concertation Resurgent
Bruce Haddock

Chapter 15. The Netherlands in Historical Perspective: The Rise and Fall of Dutch Policy Concertation
Anton Hemerijck

Chapter 16. The Netherlands in the 1990s: Towards 'Flexible Corporatism' in the Polder Model
Hans Slomp

Chapter 17. Spain in Historical Perspective: Fascist Corporatism and Social Pacts
Robert A. Robinson

Chapter 18. Spain in the 1990s: Strategic Concertation
Miguel Martínez Lucio

Chapter 19. Sweden in Historical Perspective: The Rise and Fall of the Swedish Model
James Fulcher

Chapter 20. Sweden in the 1990s: The Demise of Policy Concertation and Social Partnership and Its Sudden Reappearance in 1998
Victor A. Pestoff


Chapter 21. The Politics of Policy Concertation in the 1990s: The Role of Ideas
Hugh Compston

Chapter 22. Social Partnership 1880–1989: The Deep Historical Roots of Diverse Strategies
Stefan Berger

Chapter 23. Policy Concertation in Western Europe: A Configurational Approach
Hugh Compston

Notes on Contributors