Governing Social Risks in Post-Crisis Europe
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Governing Social Risks in Post-Crisis Europe

Colin Crouch

In this illuminating book Colin Crouch examines the diverse approaches presented by advanced societies in their attempts to resolve a central dilemma of a capitalist economy: the need to combine buoyant mass consumption with insecure workers, subject to, and responsive to, the fluctuations of an unregulated global economy. He demonstrates that the approaches of different national economies have varying degrees of success, and diverse implications for social inequality. Through the study of European societies, and comparisons with experience from the rest of the world, Crouch scrutinizes this diversity, and looks at how the 2008 global financial crisis has impacted it.
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Chapter 3: Modes of economic governance and class relations

Colin Crouch


The various components of the relationship between labour flexibility-and consumption discussed in the previous chapter become part of social-action as forms of governance. Governance is a useful concept for this-purpose, as it refers to a wide variety of ways in which human behaviour-is regulated, going far beyond government and law, and including some-forms that are implicit, even unconscious. This has been developed in-an important literature on ‘new modes’ of governance (to select a small-number of key examples, see Héritier and Lehmkuhl 2008; Kooiman 1993;-Ronit and Schneider 2000).-There are however some problems with the way in which governance-theory has developed. Interestingly, these overlap considerably with the-problems of the NSR school of analysis of labour market and social-policy discussed in Chapter 1. Both schools emerged during the past 20-years, in a period where it seemed to some that various forms of hierarchy-and inequality associated with industrial society had been transcended.-Like NSR, new modes of governance theory tries to define the changed-institutions of post-industrial-society, claiming that a new diversity of governance-has been replacing what it sees as the monolith of the state.

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