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Flexicurity: A new paradigm for labour market policy reform?

  • Wilthagen, Ton
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    This paper discusses the recently coined concept of flexicurity. It is outlined how this concept gained importance in legislative and labour market policy reform in the Netherlands, linking a number of previously separated areas of policy-making such as flexibilization and deregulation of the labour market on the one hand and social security and the concern for the negative consequences of flexible employment on the other hand. Second, the paper explores the relevance and significance of the concept to a theory of transitional labour markets. It is suggested that 'flexicurity', as a trade off or new balance between labour market flexibility and increased security for workers (especially those in precarious situations) might define more precisely and accurately the legal, social and perhaps even psychological conditions under which labour markets can become truly transitional, i.e. triggering, fostering and safeguarding transitions between employment and other distinct social systems such as private households, education, retirement and unemployment. In this way, flexicurity could be considered as an implementation strategy for transitional labour markets.

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    Paper provided by Social Science Research Center Berlin (WZB) in its series Discussion Papers, Research Unit: Labor Market Policy and Employment with number FS I 98-202.

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    Date of creation: 1998
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    Handle: RePEc:zbw:wzblpe:fsi98202
    Contact details of provider: Postal: Reichpietschufer 50, 10785 Berlin, Germany
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    1. Schmid, Günther, 1997. "The Dutch employment miracle? A comparison of employment systems in the Netherlands and Germany," Discussion Papers, Research Unit: Labor Market Policy and Employment FS I 97-202, Social Science Research Center Berlin (WZB).
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