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- PublicationWhich Path? Domestic adaptation to economic internationalization in Ireland(University College Dublin. Institute for the Study of Social Change (Geary Institute), 2004)The growing integration of international markets raises the question of how, and to what extent, domestic political processes within states continue to matter. The thesis that markets force a 'race to the bottom' and the destruction of the welfare state has been discredited; there is continuing scope for diversity. Two patterns have commonly been identified. Continental European countries cluster together around politically coordinated adjustment strategies, while the liberal, Anglo-American countries adopt ever more market-driven responses. The new EU member states in central Europe and the Balkans have been expected to join the latter category. However, a third overlooked possibility exists – that market-oriented adjustment might continue to be strongly politically mediated, in line with expectations about the incentives facing small open economies, even in liberal economies. The excellent economic performance of the Irish, Dutch and Danish economies during the 1990s belies the suggestion that neo-liberal policies produce the best outcomes. Yet Ireland is very different from these two, as it is a 'liberal market economy', while they are 'coordinated' or 'social market economies'. This paper examines the role of institutions and actors in adjustment to economic internationalization in Ireland. The argument is that path-dependent development does not preclude institutional innovation; but that there are limits to the politics of redistribution and collective consumption within a liberal economy.
- PublicationRepeating History: Fiscal Squeeze in Two Recessions in Ireland(Oxford University Press, 2014-10)Ireland has been taken as an exemplary case of fiscal adjustment, not once, but twice, in its recent history: firstly in the late 1980s, more recently in the implementation of a sharply contractionary policy mix after the crisis of 2008, underpinned by the terms of the international loan agreement negotiated in November 2010. History has in a sense repeated itself, first as tragedy, we might say, and then as tragedy again. In both cases, Ireland attracted international plaudits for the determined way in which it implemented fiscal consolidation measures. Indeed, since the experiences of the 1980s were followed by a return to growth within a few years, Ireland was one of the key cases on which the argument for 'expansionary fiscal contraction' was made. The lessons from Ireland have therefore played an important role in shaping international conventional wisdom in the post-2008 period.
- PublicationThe Troika’s variations on a trio: Why the loan programmes worked so differently in Greece, Ireland, and Portugal(University College Dublin. Geary Institute, 2017-10-17)
; ; ;Portugal and Ireland exited Troika loan programmes; Greece did not. The conventional narrative is that different outcomes are best explained by differences in national competences in implementing programme requirements. This paper argues that three factors distinguish the Greek experience from that of Ireland and Portugal: different economic, political, and institutional starting conditions; the ad hoc nature of the European institutions’ approach to crisis resolution; and the very different conditionalities built into each of the loan programmes as a result. Ireland and Portugal show some signs of recovery despite austerity measures, but Greece has been burdened beyond all capacity to recover convincingly. 345
- PublicationThe segmented state : adaptation and maladaptation in IrelandThis paper is an outcome of the research project Mapping the Irish State at UCD Geary Institute, funded by a Thematic Research Grant from the Irish Research Council for Humanities and Social Sciences (IRCHSS)
- PublicationHow governments retrench in crisis: the case of Ireland(University College Dublin. Geary Institute, 2013-09)
;The Irish experience of fiscal retrenchment under crisis conditions poses new questions of governance, the evolving answers to which are likely to involve importance changes in the state’s organizational profile and in its policy competences. The government is required to formulate and implement extremely tough choices, particularly since Ireland entered an EU-IMF loan programme in November 2010. Yet government does retain some policy discretion in the priorities it adopts in the composition of budget adjustment and in the distributive impact of cuts. This paper sets out to explore where the adjustments have been ma e through examination both of the composition of budgets and of the organizational configuration of state institutions, and it analyses how these outcomes can be accounted for. The paper draws upon a new official database setting out a detailed compositional analysis of Irish public spending between 2008 and 2012, and upon the Irish State Administration Database (http://isad.ie) through which the organizational aspects of the state's policy capacity can be analysed. 1082
- PublicationPolitics and markets in the Irish “Celtic Tiger” experience : choice, chance, or coincidence?(University College Dublin. Institute for the Study of Social Change, 2003-11)Ireland's rate of growth and employment creation during the 1990s far outstripped performance in the rest of the OECD. To what degree is this attributable to chance fluctuations in the international economy, the coincidental alignment of Irish politics and institutions with international economic conditions, or deliberate policy choice? Two policy areas are chosen for particular attention, industrial development strategy, and social partnership arrangements. A case is made for the importance of politics, above and beyond market conditions and institutional appropriateness. The viability of the “Celtic Tiger” model is considered, and its relevance for the EU accession states of Central Europe and the Baltic states is assessed.
- PublicationAdministrative reform in a liberal market economy
- PublicationPaying for government(University College Dublin. Institute for the Study of Social Change, 2004)
- PublicationTracking the state in a liberal economy(Oxford University Press, 2017-03)After 2008, many commentators anticipated that the effects of the global economic crisis would bring about a sea-change in the terms of political debate about the role of the state in economic and social policy. Neo-liberal ideas that financial markets were self-regulating and that minimal state intervention was both necessary and sufficient to facilitate growth had, it seemed, been put to the toughest test possible, and found sorely wanting. How could a whole cluster of ideas and policy priorities prove resilient to the effects of the crisis that, to their proponents, should not have happened?