Commission Entrepreneurship and the Debasing of Social Europe Before and After the Eurocrisis

Crespy, Amandine and Menz, Georg. 2015. Commission Entrepreneurship and the Debasing of Social Europe Before and After the Eurocrisis. Journal of Common Market Studies, 53(4), pp. 753-768. ISSN 0021-9886 [Article]

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Abstract or Description

The bulk of the literature on ‘social Europe’ has suggested that social policy at the level of the EU remains to be characterized by the interplay of courts and markets. While we do not disagree with this argument, our objective is to shed light on the European Commission’s entrepreneurship, an element which appears to be somewhat bereft of scholarly attention. We show how, by displaying social acuity, defining problems and building teams, the Commission has actively promoted a policy agenda focused on liberal market building at the expense of socially minded regulation. This was however only made possible by a new constellation among the Member States after 2004. We substantiate this claim by documenting the activity of the Commission in two crucial policy domains of the post-Lisbon era: the liberalization of service provision, and the impact of the new macro-economic governance on social policy after the financial and debt crisis.

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European Commission, social policy, entrepreneurship

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9 June 2015Published
13 April 2015Published Online
27 November 2014Accepted
1 April 2014Submitted

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13 Sep 2016 11:39

Last Modified:

08 Mar 2021 11:12

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Yes, this version has been peer-reviewed.


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