The Swedish Model in the Post-Financial Crisis Era
Edited by Christina Garsten, Jessica Lindvert and Renita Thedvall
Chapter 12: The labour market as a market: exchangeability, measurability and accountability
Our worlds of work are in sway. The transition from a society based mainly on industrial production to a society where the production of knowledge and services is in focus has meant big changes in the organizing of the labour market. From the 1990s onward, norms concerning work, employment and learning have become increasingly integrated with general economic policy and the development of the market. Many of the regulatory changes introduced have been motivated by factors that have no direct connection to the content of work or with the work contract itself but with reference to market development and state budgetary resources. Both the direction and scope of the regulatory changes implemented in the past two decades can be said to have followed broadly the economic development. Discussions about how responsibility for an equitable sharing of risks in the labour market should be organized have been lively. This development may be understood in terms of the emergence of a new type of regulatory state and new forms of governance and control, with an emphasis on transparency and monitoring. A number of researchers have analysed the transformation of the public sector in terms of the emergence of an ‘audit society’ where new ideas and norms for governance and control have been established (Power 1997; Strathern 2000).
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