Monastiriotis, Vassilis and Antoniades, Andreas
Reform that! Greece’s failing reform technology: beyond ‘vested interests’ and ‘political exchange’.
GreeSE: Hellenic Observatory papers on Greece and Southeast Europe,
Hellenic Observatory, London School of Economics and Political Science, London, UK.
Despite significant progress in its path towards Europeanisation over the last two decades, Greece’s reform record remains highly problematic. Persistent reform failures and a continuum of half-way reforms have characterised much of the country’s recent history. In this paper we depart form dominant explanations in the literature that focus predominantly on the political and social context (lack of political will, fragmentation of organised interests, extent of rentseeking, etc) and instead focus on the processes shaping the content of reform proposals. We identify an inherent deficiency in the country’s reform technology, linked to a deficient engagement of policy-making with expert knowledge (encompassing all aspects of knowledge production, processing and utilisation), which results in continuous policy-learning failures and, ultimately, inefficient reforms. Our analysis calls for a re-direction of emphasis from the study of how actors contest reforms to the pathologies that lead to the production of contestable reform proposals.
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