How to reduce unemployment in Europe

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Publication Date 2003
ISBN 1-4039-0804-4
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Book abstract:

This book attempts to provide an economist's 'manifesto' for Europe. Based on the statistic that the European Union (EU) is burdened by an unemployment rate of approximately 11-12%, double that of America's, it attempts to work out the economic solutions for this problem. The writers begin by pointing out that, along with matters of technical progress, low-wage countries and globalisation, the major causes of unemployment can be located in each individual Member State. The issue itself, however, as the writers also point out early on, should be construed and tackled as a European one, and not as a series of separate national problems. Recent policies in the war against unemployment that come under criticism, for example, are aggregate demand policies, minimum wage legislation, job security law and work-sharing/early retirement. Broadly, the book proposes a two-pronged attack on EU unemployment: reforms in both supply-side policies and in the policy of demand management.

The work consists of six parts. Part one, on proposals for employment in Europe, contains two essays which outline the aims of the economists' manifesto more rigorously. There is also work on why unemployment must be defeated and on a particular sector of employment, construction. Part two, on America, asks what the EU can learn from the US about reducing unemployment, alongside work on questions of industrial flexibility; part three turns to the successful example of Ireland; part four explores Italy in terms of trade unions and entrepreneurs; part five examines the role of institutions and public administration in Italy, and part six, an appendix, consists of the manifesto itself.

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