home > Working papers > WP CSDLE M. D'ANTONA > WP CSDLE M. D'ANTONA-INT > The Economic Crisis and Employment*

The Economic Crisis and Employment*

WP C.S.D.L.E. “Massimo D’Antona”.INT – 121/2015

This essay has been anonymously peer-reviewed by a referee selected by the editors.Submitted: 2015-03-16; Accepted: 2015-06-12; Published: 2015-07-01

This article is about employment and the measures adopted to deal with it since 2008 when the economic crisis struck and subsequently spread globally giving rise to worrying levels of alarm. There follows an analysis of the solutions provided by the two disciplines dealing with this issue, Macro-Economy and Labour Law which latter will be the main focus, without neglecting, that through the Macro-Economy there can be balanced redistribution of income by way of the internal policies of each State. Managing employment (and its consequences) is entrusted to State labour law and policies, through the adopted welfare systems. The analysis will also focus on these specific subjects: 1) the transition from an industrial to a post-industrial technological and innovative society; 2) demographic trends which record a steady decline in birth rate and a parallel increase in the elderly population; 3) the economic crisis and globalization which have undermined the national sovereignty of states, and quickly brought about defaulting state welfare systems in most European countries, rendering them inadequate (or sometimes too expensive). So, it is necessary to breathe new life into the welfare system to obviate the ’passive’ employment policies which have tended to create a chronic state of – a more or less assisted – unemployment and aim at re-launching the real meaning of welfare in the knowledge that the reality in which we move and operate has changed. The European Union has not been insensitive to employment issues implementing the Lisbon Strategy 2000 and Europe 2020, the first leg of which was completed in 2010 (without having produced great results), and the second one is ongoing, but it still focuses on theoretical levels with disappointing or, rather insignificant results. It seems, in general, that Europe considers - not without criticism - ‘flexicurity’ (identified in the Dutch model) as the key to raising employment levels in the euro-zone. In 2014 the ‘flexicurity’ strategy was re-launched. The challenge is therefore to implement flexicurity in all the Member States, while giving greater importance (a fact which now seems neglected) to those social rights which have always characterized the Old Continent, and which lately seem to have been overshadowed.

author(s): Caponetti, Simone
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