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National Economic NESC Social Council NESC Social Partnership in Ireland NEWGOV Policy Learning and Experimentation, London, March 2006 Rory O’Donnell,

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Presentation on theme: "National Economic NESC Social Council NESC Social Partnership in Ireland NEWGOV Policy Learning and Experimentation, London, March 2006 Rory O’Donnell,"— Presentation transcript:

1 National Economic NESC Social Council NESC Social Partnership in Ireland NEWGOV Policy Learning and Experimentation, London, March 2006 Rory O’Donnell, Director, NESC

2 NESC Overview The analytical basis of partnership Who initiated partnership? Was there learning? Was there an EU role? Interpreting the EU role? In search of a role in EMU? Employment, inclusion and OMC

3 NESC Consistent policy framework 1. Macroeconomic –Low inflation –Growth of demand 2. Distributional –Ensure competitivess –Handle distributional conflict –Fair 3. Structural adjustment/supply-side policy –For success in changing environment

4 NESC Policy content for Ireland 1. Macroeconomic policy: EMS to EMU public finance correction 2. Distribution: centralised wage, welfare, tax 3. Structural change: training, technology, social...

5 NESC Within a consistent framework 1.Most effective policies are supply-side 2.National policies must produce flexibility 3.Successful supply-side policies depend on level of social cohesion and co-operation

6 Dual evolution of partnership Content From macro to supply-side policies Method high-level bargaining to multi-level problem solving

7 NESC Dimensions of partnership Bargaining and deal making. Solidarity, inclusiveness and participation. Deliberation, interaction, problem- solving and shared understanding

8 NESC Who initiated social partnership? Economic, social, political crisis Analysis in NESC Agreed NESC Strategy report Negotiated 3 year programme 6 programmes since 1987

9 NESC Was there learning? Conscious search for models of business development, macroeconomic policy, social consensus, industrial relations and social policy Initially part of ideological deadlock EU impact combined market conformity and gains from coordination Partnership associated with move to pragmatic learning Change in parts has changed the whole

10 NESC Was there an EU role? EU context: –trade and CAP Profound EU role via: –EMS –Internal market –Structural Funds –EES

11 NESC Interpreting the EU role Both externally and internally ‘from sovereignty to partnership’ EU altered political economy of dominant European models EU drawn to experimental policy approaches EU has to rely on networked problem solving EU a new model of internationalisation Distinguish ‘cause’ and ‘context’

12 NESC In search of a role in EMU? Limited direct role for Irish partnership Effective EU macro policy needed Greater concern with supply side: –EU reform programmes –Networked sectors –Services directive and labour market –Migration

13 NESC Employment, inclusion and OMC Ireland anticipated much of EES and OMC OMC secondary to partnership and SF Some direct learning: ‘Preventative Strategy’ Must look beyond employment creation and unemployment reduction Which raises deep questions: Has partnership retained its learning and problem solving capacity? Does Ireland have a social system to match its economic ambitions? Major review of welfare state

14 NESC Discussion


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