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The German Political Economy Between Deregulation and Re-regulation: Party Discourses on Minimum Wage Policies

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Issue Date
2012
Publisher
Graduate School of Public Administration, Seoul National University
Citation
Korean Journal of Policy Studies, Vol.27 No.2, pp. 91-120
Keywords
coordinated market economyGermanyHartz labor market reformlabor market liberalizationlow-wage employmentminimum wage policyparty discourse
Abstract
In the German political economy of the early 21st century, labor market
policymaking has shifted toward deregulation and liberalization. In particular, the
so-called Hartz labor market reforms of the Social Democratic Party and Green
Party government, introduced in 2002 and 2003, pushed for employment growth
in low-wage and deregulated employment sectors. This article focuses on one of
the key debates triggered by Germanys labor market deregulation after 2002,
namely whether the introduction of a statutory minimum wage is required to
re-regulate the countrys labor market. Based on interviews with members of the
five political parties in the German federal parliament and analysis of each partys
policy-making discourses over time (2002-2012), the article suggests that
the deregulation of the last decade has triggered demand for new policies of reregulation.
This would include the introduction of a statutory minimum wage in
Germany at some future point in time. However, such re-regulation does not
question earlier labor market liberalization but serves as a political side-payment
to ingrain the shift of the German political economy toward a more liberal regime.
ISSN
1225-5017
Language
English
URI
https://hdl.handle.net/10371/79017
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Graduate School of Public Administration (행정대학원)Dept. of Public Administration (행정학과)Korean Journal of Policy Studies (정책논총, KJPS)Korean Journal of Policy Studies (정책논총) vol.27 no.1-3 (2012)
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