ELIAMEP Crisis Observatory Interview

During a European Seminar entitled “Europe in Crisis, Citizens in Protest” (4-7 July, 2013, Nafplion, Greece), I gave a video recorded interview for the Crisis Observatory/ELIAMEP.

In it, I discuss why the Eurozone has not been able to exit the crisis and problems with current approaches to the crisis among other things. The interview was transcribed and can be read on line in English here.

Austerity Seen Easing With Change to EU Budget Policy?

Vivien Schmidt’s comment on Mathew Dalton’s September 19 Wall Street Journal article, “Austerity Seen Easing with Change to EU Budget Policy,” was picked up by AP reporter Juergen Baetz. Comment and links to both articles below.

Easing austerity through change to EU budget policy is a very significant move.  If agreed by EU finance officials, changing the calculation of the ‘structural deficit’ could go a long way to easing the economic problems—and thereby the political ones–of the Southern European countries as well as Ireland.  It is also a silent acknowledgement of the fact that the radical deficit cutting programs of the past three years have failed to address growth.  It may not be possible to reverse the financial stability rules and numerical targets of the various Eurozone pacts, but  it is possible to reinterpret them.  And by reinterpreting them, the worst aspects of those rules, the growth destroying aspects, may be set aside.  What we are seeing is the beginning of a process of re-evaluation of the economic policies that have kept growth down while increasing debt-to-GDP ratios, and thereby keeping the Eurozone from exiting the crisis.  It is about time.

Links:

Austerity Seen Easing With Change to EU Budget Policy – Change Would Have Big Impact on Spain, Significantly Reduce Estimates of Government’s ‘Structural Deficit’ by Mathew Dalton (Wall Street Journal 9/19/13)

EU to Change Budget Calculation to Ease Austerity by Juergen Baetz (Associated Press 9/19/13)

The Future of the Eurozone

I was a keynote speaker, along with Iain Begg, at a plenary on “The Future of the Eurozone” at the Sheffield Political Economy Research Institute annual conference Beyond Austerity vs Growth: The Future of the European Political Economy at the University of Sheffield on 1-3 July 2013.  Participants included leading academics, policy makers and journalists from across the globe. You can view a video of the session on YouTube. (My talk begins at 39:13minutes.)

 

Schmidt Publishes Resilient Liberalism in Europe’s Political Economy

Vivien Schmidt’s co-edited contribution to Cambridge University Press’s Contemporary European Politics series has been released in the UK and will be available in the US by the end of the month. The book – Resilient Liberalism in European Political Economy – explains why neoliberal economic ideas have not just survived, but thrived since the 1980s – taking Europe from boom to bust.

Abstract

Why have neo-liberal economic ideas been so resilient since the 1980s, despite major intellectual challenges, crippling financial and political crises, and failure to deliver on their promises? Why do they repeatedly return, not only to survive but to thrive? This groundbreaking book proposes five lines of analysis to explain the dynamics of both continuity and change in neo-liberal ideas: the flexibility of neo-liberalism’s core principles; the gaps between neo-liberal rhetoric and reality; the strength of neo-liberal discourse in debates; the power of interests in the strategic use of ideas; and the force of institutions in the embedding of neo-liberal ideas. The book’s highly distinguished group of authors shows how these possible explanations apply across the most important domains – fiscal policy, the role of the state, welfare and labour markets, regulation of competition and financial markets, management of the Euro, and corporate governance – in the European Union and across European countries.

About the editors

Vivien A. Schmidt is Jean Monnet Professor of European Integration and Professor of International Relations and Political Science at Boston University and Founding Director of Boston University’s Center for the Study of Europe.

Mark Thatcher is Professor in Comparative and International Politics in the Department of Government at the London School of Economics and Political Science.

About the series

Contemporary European Politics presents the latest scholarship on the most important subjects in European politics. The world’s leading scholars provide accessible, state-of-the-art surveys of the major issues which face Europe now and in the future. Examining Europe as a whole and taking a broad view of its politics, these volumes will appeal to scholars and to undergraduate and graduate students of politics and European studies.