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Legitimately Diverse, yet Comparable: On Synthesizing Social Inclusion Performance in the EU

  • LAURENS CHERCHYE
  • WIM MOESEN
  • TOM PUYENBROECK

The open method of co-ordination (OMC) intends to enhance EU Member States'performance on social inclusion. In this context a set of commonly agreed performance indicators plays an important role. While the communicative power of a synthetic indicator has been recognized, several objections have been raised against such a construction. In this article, we argue that a set of separate indicators can in principle be combined into a meaningful synthetic performance index without giving up on the notion of subsidiarity, and without fundamentally impairing the peer pressure incentives that constitute an important rationale for OMC. We complement the presentation of the conceptual framework with a number of empirical applications, thereby indicating how the basic method may be instrumental for policy benchmarking practice. Copyright Blackwell Publishing Ltd 2004.

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Article provided by Wiley Blackwell in its journal Journal of Common Market Studies.

Volume (Year): 42 (2004)
Issue (Month): 5 (December)
Pages: 919-955

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Handle: RePEc:bla:jcmkts:v:42:y:2004:i:5:p:919-955
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  1. Atkinson, Tony & Cantillon, Bea & Marlier, Eric & Nolan, Brian, 2002. "Social Indicators: The EU and Social Inclusion," OUP Catalogue, Oxford University Press, number 9780199253494, March.
  2. Laurens Cherchye & & Timo Kuosmanen, 2002. "Benchmarking Sustainable Development: A Synthetic Meta-index Approach," Others 0210001, EconWPA, revised 08 Oct 2002.
  3. Giammusso Federico & Tangorra Raffaele, 2002. "Indicators on Poverty and Social Exclusion: Moving Toward a Social Europe?," Politica economica - Journal of Economic Policy (PEJEP), Società editrice il Mulino, issue 1, pages 29-48.
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  6. Hills John, 2002. "Comprehensibility and Balance: The Case for Putting Indicators in Baskets," Politica economica - Journal of Economic Policy (PEJEP), Società editrice il Mulino, issue 1, pages 95-98.
  7. Gouyette, Claudine & Pestieau, Pierre, 1999. "Efficiency of the Welfare State," Kyklos, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 52(4), pages 537-53.
  8. Brandolini Andrea, 2002. "Education and Employment Indicators for the EU Social Agenda," Politica economica - Journal of Economic Policy (PEJEP), Società editrice il Mulino, issue 1, pages 55-62.
  9. Laurens Cherchye, 2001. "Using data envelopment analysis to assess macroeconomic policy performance," Applied Economics, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 33(3), pages 407-416.
  10. Tony Atkinson, 2002. "Social Inclusion and the European Union," Journal of Common Market Studies, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 40(4), pages 625-643, November.
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