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  MPIfG Scholar-in-Residence


MPIfG Scholar in Residence Lectures 2010

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The Transformation of the European Models of Capitalism

Bruno Amable

The three lectures will examine some of the significant changes that have affected the institutions of European economies. In his book "The Diversity of Modern Capitalism" (Oxford, 2003), Bruno Amable distinguished between several different models of capitalism within Europe. One in particular, the Continental model, which could represent countries like France or Germany, was considered to be under more pressure for "reform" than other models. The lectures will consider several aspects of the structural reform programs implemented during the past decade and their consequences for the stability of the Continental model.

Die Transformation des europäischen Kapitalismus. In seinen drei Vorträgen beschäftigt sich Bruno Amable mit einigen maßgeblichen Veränderungen in der Institutionenstruktur europäischer Ökonomien. Von den in seinem 2003 erschienenen Buch "The Diversity of Modern Capitalism" unterschiedenen europäischen Modellen des Kapitalismus stand der "kontinentale Kapitalismus" von Ländern wie Frankreich oder Deutschland bisher unter dem größten Reformdruck. In den Vorträgen wird Amable verschiedene Aspekte der Strukturreformprogramme des letzten Jahrzehnts genauer betrachten und deren Auswirkungen auf die Stabilität des kontinentalen Modells diskutieren.


Wednesday, February 3, 2010 | 5:30 p.m.
The Lisbon Agenda: Saving the European Model or Killing It?
The first lecture will focus on the "Lisbon Agenda," whose underlying philosophy was that the “knowledge-based society” would require substantial transformations of Europe’s economic models. Incorporating both a strong confidence in the economic efficiency of market liberalization and an objective of social cohesion, the Lisbon Agenda stands out as an incoherent mixture of economic liberalism, social democratic aspirations and neo-Schumpeterian technological determinism. It does not constitute a coherent framework for renewing the European models of capitalism but is instead part of a movement of structural reform promoting the emergence of a neoliberal model.
Related Publications:
Bruno Amable, Structural Reforms in Europe and the (In)coherence of Institutions (Oxford Review of Economic Policy 25, 1, 17–39, 2009).
Bruno Amable/Lilas Demmou/Ivan Ledezma, The Lisbon Strategy and Structural Reforms in Europe. Transfer: European Review of Labour and Research 15, 1, 33–52, 2009).


Wednesday, February 10, 2010 | 5:30 p.m.
Employment, Unemployment and Structural Reforms
The received wisdom about the economic situation in Continental Europe is that structural reforms are needed to boost economic performance. Unemployment has been at the center
of the structural reforms debate. A mix of market flexibility and social protection referred to as "flexicurity" has been proposed as the ultimate solution to Europe’s economic problems: it would make labor markets more efficient while preserving social cohesion. The second lecture will examine critically the structural reforms usually proposed as a cure to Europe’s employment problems, concentrating on their economic effects and implications for the political economy.
Related Publications:
Bruno Amable, Structural Reforms in Europe and the (In)coherence of Institutions (Oxford Review of Economic Policy 25, 1, 17–39, 2009).
Bruno Amable/Lilas Demmou/Donatella Gatti, The Effect of Employment Protection and Product Market Regulation on Labour Market Performance: Substitution or Complementarity? (Applied Economics, forthcoming).


Wednesday, February 17, 2010 | 5:30 p.m.
Innovation and Competitiveness: The Limits of Deregulation Policy
Concerns about Europe’s inability to match the United States’ productivity levels over the past decade gave rise to the structural reform programs. A link between competition and innovation underlies the whole Lisbon Strategy: more product market competition should bolster innovation and thus productivity and growth. More precisely, deregulated product markets should be particularly important for innovation in countries that are technologically advanced. This idea is behind most of the policy recommendations justifying product market deregulation in OECD countries in reference to innovation. This lecture will explore the theoretical arguments and the empirical evidence linking product market deregulation and innovation performance.
Related Publications:
Bruno Amable/Lilas Demmou/Ivan Ledezma, Product Market Regulation, Innovation and Distance to Frontier (Industrial and Corporate Change, forthcoming).

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