Flexicurity: A New Paradigm for Labour Market Policy Reform?

Social Science Research Center Berlin Discussion Paper No. FS I 98-202

30 Pages Posted: 18 May 2008

See all articles by Ton Wilthagen

Ton Wilthagen

Tilburg University - Tilburg Flexicurity Research Programme

Date Written: February 1998

Abstract

This paper discusses the recently coined concept of flexicurity. It is outlined how this concept gained importance in legislative and labour market policy reform in the Netherlands, linking a number of previously separated areas of policy-making such as flexibilization and deregulation of the labour market on the one hand and social security and the concern for the negative consequences of flexible employment on the other hand.

Second, the paper explores the relevance and significance of the concept to a theory of transitional labour markets. It is suggested that 'flexicurity', as a trade off or new balance between labour market flexibility and increased security for workers (especially those in precarious situations) might define more precisely and accurately the legal, social and perhaps even psychological conditions under which labour markets can become truly transitional, i.e. triggering, fostering and safeguarding transitions between employment and other distinct social systems such as private households, education, retirement and unemployment.

Keywords: flexicurity, European Employment Strategy, social partners, industrial relations, negotiation

JEL Classification: J00, J2, K31

Suggested Citation

Wilthagen, Ton, Flexicurity: A New Paradigm for Labour Market Policy Reform? (February 1998). Social Science Research Center Berlin Discussion Paper No. FS I 98-202, Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=1133924 or http://dx.doi.org/10.2139/ssrn.1133924

Ton Wilthagen (Contact Author)

Tilburg University - Tilburg Flexicurity Research Programme ( email )

PO Box 90153
5000 LE Tilburg
Tilburg
Netherlands
0031134662473 (Phone)
0031134663139 (Fax)

HOME PAGE: http://www.tilburguniversity.nl/flexicurity

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