Varieties of cross-class coalitions in the politics of dualization: Insights from the case of vocational training in Germany
The literature notes an increasing trend towards labor market stratification and dualization in coordinated market economies such as Germany. Labor market insiders and insider-oriented cross-class coalitions are usually identified as the driving forces behind these developments. This paper adds to this perspective by identifying different varieties of cross-class coalitions. On the basis of three case studies from the field of vocational training policy in Germany, two kinds of coalitions are identified: a conservative cross-class coalition of unions and employers that is against state intrusion into the domain of firm-based training, and a segmentalist cross-class coalition of social democratic government actors and business that is promoting an incremental flexibilization of the system against union opposition. In an alternating manner, both coalitions block the large-scale change that would be the most effective in countering dualization. Hence, they tacitly support dualization by drift.
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