The Politics of Economic Adjustment: Pluralism, Corporatism, and Privatization

The Politics of Economic Adjustment: Pluralism, Corporatism, and Privatization

by Richard E. Foglesong, Joel Wolfe


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Privatization and corporatism along with pluralist forms of adaptation have received much attention as strategies for coping with the transformation of mature industrial economics. Yet, the burgeoning literature on this topic has, until now, lacked an adequate account of the determinants of a government's choice between such strategies or of the relationships between these strategies and the Keynesian economic framework that predominated in the postwar era. This groundbreaking study bridges these gaps by considering both the determinants of the choice of an adjustment strategy and how that choice affects the nature of liberal democracy. Written by a distinguished group of political scientists, the essays collected here examine the divergent responses of liberal capitalist nations to the problem of economic adjustment, giving special attention to the political factors affecting strategic choices aimed at bolstering employment, enhancing international competitiveness, and restoring healthy productivity rates.

The contributors examine in depth the experiences of the United States, Britain, France, West Germany, and Italy. They explain how these advanced industrial nations have faced economic crisis differently and why they have responded as they have. In each case, the author focuses on whether and at what level the state has pursued a corporatist approach involving a more direct government role in managing the economy with the assistance of private interest groups, a privatization strategy involving less state intervention and an increased reliance on market processes, or a form of pluralist adaptation. Throughout, the contributors demonstrate that the strategy pursued can have a fundamental impact on the character of democracy and the patterns of policy making. Students of political science as well as policy makers will find this book an incisive discussion of the myriad factors influencing the choice among competing strategies of economic adjustment.

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9780313266270
Publisher: ABC-CLIO, Incorporated
Publication date: 10/11/1989
Series: Contributions in Political Science Series , #23
Pages: 198
Product dimensions: 6.14(w) x 9.21(h) x 0.50(d)

About the Author

RICHARD E. FOGLESONG is Associate Professor of Politics at Rollins College in Florida. He wrote Planning the Capitalist City and articles published in Challenge and the Orlando Sentinel. In 1990, Foglesong will be the Harvey S. Perloff Visiting Professor of Urban Planning in the Graduate School of Architecture and Urban Planning at UCLA.

JOEL D. WOLFE is Associate Professor of Political Science at the University of Cincinnati. He wrote Workers, Participation, and Democracy (Greenwood Press, 1985) and numerous articles published in the Political Science Reviewer, West European Politics, The Review of Politics, Comparative Politics, and Polity.

Table of Contents


Reorganizing Interest Representation: A Political Analysis of Privatization in Britain

The Politics of Industrial Policy in the United States

The Industrial Policy Controversy in West Germany: Organized Adjustment and the Emergence of Meso-Corporatism

Neoliberalism and the Battle over Working-Time Reduction in West Germany

Democracy at the Margins: The International System and Policy Change in France

Industrial Adjustment in the French Steel Industry

Deindustrialization, Economic Performance, and Industrial Policy: British and American Theories Applied to Italy

Democracy and Economic Adjustment: A Comparative Analysis of Political Change

Selected Bibliography


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