Concertation, Coalitions or Unilateralism? Policymaking Under Conditionality During the Great Recession: Modalities and Causes

Prof. Rui Branco
Open Panel

Conveners: Rui Branco (NOVA University Lisbon, Portugal), Arianna Tassinari (University of Warwick, UK), Daniel Cardoso (IPRI-NOVA, Portugal) and Stefano Sacchi (Polytechnic University of Turin/ INAPP, Italy)
In order to face the economic and fiscal difficulties of the Great Recession, afflicted countries in the Southern and Western periphery of the Eurozonereceived direct or indirect assistance from international lenders, which was accompanied by either formal or implicit forms of conditionality. Despite the external pressure, various scholars have shown that domestic politics still played a role in determining policy outputs in this period. However, there is still debate regarding how and under which conditions domestic politics mattered in the context of the crisis.
This symposyum aims to elucidate this debate by bringing together scholars analysing the relationship between domestic actors (governments, parties, social partners, CSOs, organised interest groups, courts) and the choice of policy modes (social concertation, governmental unilateralism or coalitional politics) driving policy decisions under crisis conditions, with a particular focus on the arenas of industrial relations, labour market and social protection. Under what conditions do governments cooperate with other actors or rather choose to implement policies unilaterally? What kind of domestic policy coalitions were forged during the Great Recession, and how did these impact on policy outputs? What strategies do non-governmental actors employ to remain influential during crisis times? To what extent was the nature of the policies adopted during the crisis affected by the mode of policy-making driving them? Does the manner in which a policy was adopted influence its resilience after the crisis? How has the crisis experience shaped patterns of interaction between governments and non-governmental actors in policy-making in the post-crisis period?
These and related questions will be addressed in two separate panels gathering scholars working on case-studies from across the Eurozone periphery (e.g. Greece, Italy, Portugal and Spain, Ireland) and/or from a theoretical background. The goal is to offer a more comprehensive and nuanced understanding of the interaction between politics and policy during the crisis and post-crisis periods, combining descriptive, explanatory and evaluative treatments of the subject