This chapter analyses the impact of liberalisation in employment relations in four Southern European countries (Italy, Spain, Portugal and Greece). It focuses on the effect of austerity reforms from 2010 onwards and it takes a historical approach to discuss the ruptures and continuities on the relationships and linkages between industrial relations’ actors. Further, it uses the EU-SILC panel data to identify the impact on employment outcomes in terms of pay, job change, and transitions towards a non-employment situation for four periods: before the crisis (2004-07), during the crisis (2007-10), during the period of collective bargaining reforms (2010-13) and the period after 2013 (2013-16 and 2016-18). The results show that these countries had a higher degree of change and flexibility in the labour market that traditional institutionalist analysis would have expected and that the reforms continued existing liberalisation trends by further eroding organised labour capacities, Further, they highlight the importance of the processes happening inside formally unchanged institutional settings.
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