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Polanyi in Brussels? Embeddedness and the three dimensions of European economic integration

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  • Höpner, Martin
  • Schäfer, Armin
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    Abstract

    In a recent article, Caporaso and Tarrow have argued that the jurisprudence of the European Court of Justice (ECJ) is increasingly moving in a social policy direction that will ultimately put European politics on a 'Polanyian' course. We take issue with their claim and distinguish three dimensions of European economic and social integration: market-correcting integration, market-enforcing integration, and the creation of a European area of nondiscrimination, the latter consisting of two subdimensions, namely nondiscrimination on the basis of characteristics such as gender, age, and ethnic origin, on the one hand, and nondiscriminatory transnational access to the social security systems of the member states, on the other. Increased heterogeneity among European varieties of capitalism perpetuates the different ranges and speeds of these integration dimensions. We conclude that the Polanyi-in-Brussels hypothesis is misleading. Politically enforced social integration has not made much progress in the last decades, while market-enforcing integration and European nondiscrimination policies have asymmetrically profited from 'integration through law.' So far, the impact of European integration on political economy has been Hayekian rather than Polanyian. -- Jüngst haben Caporaso und Tarrow argumentiert, die Rechtsprechung des Europäischen Gerichtshofs (EuGH) weise zunehmend soziale Züge auf und führe dazu, dass die europäische Integration eine 'Polanyische' Richtung einnehme. Wir wenden uns gegen diese These und unterscheiden drei Dimensionen der europäischen Wirtschafts- und Sozialintegration: die marktkorrigierende Integration, die marktschaffende Inte�gration und die Schaffung eines europäischen Antidiskriminierungsraums, wobei letztere aus zwei Subdimensionen besteht, nämlich der Nichtdiskriminierung aus Gründen wie denen des Alters, der ethnischen Zugehörigkeit und des Geschlechts einerseits, und der Durchsetzung eines diskriminierungsfreien transnationalen Zugangs zu den sozialen Sicherungssystemen der Mitgliedstaaten andererseits. Die gestiegene Heterogenität europäischer Spielarten des Kapitalismus perpetuiert die unterschiedlichen Reichweiten und Geschwindigkeiten der Integration in den drei Dimensionen. Wir kommen zu dem Ergebnis, dass die 'Polanyi in Brüssel'-These unzutreffend ist. Während die politisch herbeigeführte, soziale Integration kaum Fortschritte macht, profitieren die marktschaffende Integration und die europäische Antidiskriminierungspolitik von der 'Integration durch Recht'. Die europäische Integration trägt daher weit mehr Hayeksche als Polanyische Züge.

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    Paper provided by Max Planck Institute for the Study of Societies in its series MPIfG Discussion Paper with number 10/8.

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    Date of creation: 2010
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    Handle: RePEc:zbw:mpifgd:p0088

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    1. Beckert, Jens, 2007. "The Great Transformation of Embeddedness: Karl Polanyi and the New Economic Sociology," MPIfG Discussion Paper 07/1, Max Planck Institute for the Study of Societies.
    2. Amable, Bruno, 2003. "The Diversity of Modern Capitalism," OUP Catalogue, Oxford University Press, number 9780199261147.
    3. Eising, Rainer, 2002. "Policy Learning in Embedded Negotiations: Explaining EU Electricity Liberalization," International Organization, Cambridge University Press, vol. 56(01), pages 85-120, December.
    4. Emiliano Grossman, 2006. "Europeanization as an Interactive Process: German Public Banks Meet EU State Aid Policy," Journal of Common Market Studies, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 44(2), pages 325-348, 06.
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