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The politics of labour market reforms and social citizenship in Germany

Fleckenstein, Timo (2012) The politics of labour market reforms and social citizenship in Germany. West European Politics, 35 (4). pp. 847-868. ISSN 0140-2382

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Identification Number: 10.1080/01402382.2012.682348


Since the second half of the 1990s, German labour market policy has experienced paradigmatic changes, undermining the conservative ideal of preserving social status and maintaining achieved living standards. Reforms carried out by the conservative–liberal government of the 1990s focused largely on workfare measures. This development had its roots in the progressive disintegration of the cross-class alliance of organised business and trade unions that had previously supported Bismarckian unemployment protection. The withdrawal of employers from the conservative welfare state can be related to far-reaching socio-economic changes which were thought to undermine the functional feasibility of the social dimension of the ‘German Model’. Instead of pursuing ‘social democratic’ activation, the Red–Green government (1998–2005) not only continued on the reform trajectory of its predecessor, but accelerated the departure from the established policy path. Understanding the revision of social democratic labour market policy requires scrutiny of both shifts in power and policy learning.

Item Type: Article
Official URL:
Additional Information: © 2012 Taylor & Francis
Divisions: Social Policy
Subjects: H Social Sciences > HD Industries. Land use. Labor
Date Deposited: 16 Nov 2012 12:01
Last Modified: 15 Sep 2023 14:32

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