Third Roundtable of the Next Left Economic Circle – The Euro crisis and the need for an alternative economic policy package for the Euro area

09/02/2012

The third roundtable focused on “The Euro crisis and the need for an alternative economic policy package for the Euro area” with guest speaker Engelbert Stockhammer, Professor of Economics at Kingston University, London.

Indeed, while unemployment is rising and several European states are on the verge of bankruptcy as financial markets refuse to roll over their outstanding debt, the policy response to the crisis has been an orthodox package of austerity and downward pressure on wages. This presentation will establish the origins of the crisis to the neoliberal economic policy regime in the EU. Neoliberalism has given rise to two different, complementary growth models: one of debt-led growth and one of export-led growth. Both are built on wage suppression, and are ultimately unsustainable. European integration has been dominated by Neoliberalism, but a European welfare state based on coordinated collective bargaining that aims at higher wage growth in trade surplus countries, speed bumps for financial flows and a European social security system would be economically viable and prevent many of the imbalances that have led to the present crisis.

See the slides of Engelbert Stockhammer’s presentation

Background

The roundtables of the next Left Economic Circle bring together progressive economists from different European institutions, from civil society organisations and the business sector, who wish to evaluate the economic theoretical corpus behind economic policy proposals. The roundtables consist of regular public meetings, co-organised by the Foundation for European Progressive Studies (FEPS) and the Global Progressive Forum (GPF) and are co-chaired by Liem Hoang-Ngoc (MEP, S&D Group at the European Parliament) and Stephany Griffith-Jones (Professor of Economics, Columbia University). They take place in the European Parliament in Brussels (translation in French and English) at lunch time. For each roundtable, a renowned economist is invited as a guest speaker.

Speaker

Engelbert Stockhammer obtained his PhD at the University of Massachusetts at Amherst in 2000. He joined Kingston in 2010. He is presently research associate at the Political Economy Research Institute at the University of Massachusetts at Amherst and member of the coordination committee of the Research Network Macroeconomics and Macroeconomic Policy. His research areas include macroeconomics, applied econometrics, financial systems and heterodox economics. He has worked extensively on the determinants of European unemployment, the demand effects of changes in income distribution and the macroeconomics effects of financialisation. He has published numerous articles in international peer-refereed journals including the Cambridge Journal of Economics, Structural Change and Economic Dynamics, the Journal of Post Keynesian Economics, the International Review of Applied Economics and the European Journal of Industrial Relations. In 2004 he published the book The rise of unemployment in Europe (Edward Elgar); in 2009 he edited two books, one together with E. Hein and T. Niechoj on Macroeconomic policy on shaky foundations. Whither mainstream economics? (Metropolis), and the other Heterodoxe Ökonomie (Metropolis) together with J.Becker, A. Grisold, G. Mikl-Horke, R. Pirker, H. Rauchenschwandtner, O. Schwank and E. Springler.

Meeting document

Peripheral Europe’s debt and German wages: the role of wage policy in the Euro area – University of Kingston, London – Author: Engelbert Stockhammer

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