Challenging the Market: The Struggle to Regulate Work and Income

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McGill-Queen's Press - MQUP, 2004 - Business & Economics - 387 pages
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For two decades economic and social policy in most of the world has been guided by the notion that economies function best when they are fully exposed to competitive market forces. In labour market policy, this approach is reflected in the widespread emphasis on "flexibility" - a euphemism for the retrenchment of income support and social security, the relaxation of labour market regulations, and the enhanced power of private actors to determine the terms of the employment relationship. These strategies have had marked effects on labour market outcomes, leading to greater vulnerability and polarization - and not always in ways that enhance worker-centred flexibility. The authors offer a more balanced analysis of the functioning and effects of labour market regulation and deregulation. By questioning the underpinnings of the "flexibility" paradigm, and revealing its often damaging impacts (on different countries, sectors, and constituencies), they challenge the conclusion that unregulated market forces produce optimal labour market outcomes. The authors conclude with several suggestions for how labour policy could be reformulated to promote both efficiency and equity.
 

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Contents

Challenging the Market The Struggle to Regulate Work and Income
3
THE CHANGING ECONOMICS OF LABOUR MARKET REGULATION
31
The NAIRU Labour Market Flexibility and Full Employment
33
The Causes of High Unemployment Labour Market Sclerosis versus Macroeconomic Policy
51
Institutions and Policies for Labour Market Success in Four Small European Countries
75
DEVELOPMENTS IN LABOUR MARKET STRUCTURE
95
Challenging Segmentation in South Africas Labour Market Regulated Flexibility or Flexible Regulation?
97
The Russian Reforms and Their Impact on Labour A Transition to What?
119
Towards Perfect Flexibility Youth as an Industrial Reserve Army for the New Economy
205
The Crisis in Rural Labour Markets Failures and Challenges for Regulation
227
Technology Gender and Regulation Call Centres in New Brunswick
246
Neoliberalism Social Democracy and the Struggle to Improve Labour Standards for Parttime Workers in Saskatchewan
265
ALTERNATIVE VISIONS
287
Labour Market Deregulation and the US LivingWage Movement
289
Gendered Resistance Organizing Justice for Janitors in Los Angeles
309
Labours Current Organizational Struggles in Argentina Towards a New Beginning?
330

Deregulating Industrial Relations in the Apparel Sector The Decree System in Quebec
135
European Labour Market Regulation The Case of European Works Councils
151
THE DIFFERENTIAL EFFECTS OF LABOUR MARKET DEREGULATION
173
Racializing the Division of Labour Neoliberal Restructuring and the Economic Segregation of Canadas Racialized Groups
175
Critical Times for French Employment Regulation The 35Hour Week and the Challenge to Social Partnership
346
How Credible Are International Corporate Labour Codes? Monitoring Global Production Chains
365
Contributors
385
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Page 364 - Loi, du 2 novembre 1892, sur le travail des enfants, des filles mineures et des femmes dans les établissements industriels.
Page 380 - The primary aim of this policy shall be to improve occupational safety and health and to prevent accidents and injury to health arising out of, linked with or occurring in the course of work...

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About the author (2004)

JIM STANFORD is an economist with the Canadian Auto Workers and one of Canada's best-known economic commentators. He is a visiting fellow with the Canadian Centre for Policy Alternatives in Ottawa and has been one of the principal authors of the "Alternative Federal Budget". He lives in Halifax with his partner and daughter.

Leah F. Vosko, Canada Research Chair in Feminist Political Economy, Social Science (Political Science), Atkinson, York University, is the author of "Temporary Work: The Gendered Rise of a Precarious Employment Relationship" and co-editor of "Changing Canada: Political Economy as Transformation.

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