This book addresses a number of vital economic convergence issues in the European Union. These are both general and specific issues relating to financial and monetary matters as well as social and labour market concerns.
The book opens with a discussion of problems of a general nature. Questions posed include: What is the convergence record in the EU so far? Is there a sign of Baumol and Quah's `convergence clubs' and `twin peaks'? Have the `structural funds' of the European Commission made any difference?
The authors then analyse questions of a fiscal and monetary nature: Can we expect the monetary policy of the ECB to have similar effects in the EMU member-states, or is it in itself a source of asymmetric shocks? Has EU membership made any difference, with respect to the initial differences in tax revenue structures? Finally the book focuses on questions regarding social and labour markets: Is global economic convergence compatible with sustainable differences in national social protection levels? Does European globalisation force labour markets to `de-institutionalise' and do European labour markets converge to a `Third Way' model?
Academics and researchers of European studies and economic policy will find this up-to-date book of great interest, as will policymakers and business leaders both affected by and from within the EU.
Edited by the late Wim Meeusen, former Professor of Economics, Universiteit Antwerpen, Belgium and Jose Villaverde, Professor of Economics, Universidad de Cantabria, Spain
Full Contents: 1. Introduction and Outline Part I: Convergence Between Nations and Regions in the EU: General Issues 2. Regional Adjustment and Convergence in Euro-land 3. A Quarter of a Century of Real GDP and Growth Rate Convergence and Divergence in the EU 4. Convergence or `Twin Peaks'? The Spanish Case 5. The Impact of European Structural Funds on Economic Convergence in European Countries and Regions 6. Optimum Currency Area Theory and Monetary Integration as a Gradual Process Part II: Convergence in the EU: Fiscal and Monetary Issues 7. The Impact of EU Membership on Tax Revenue Structures 8. The Propagation of Monetary Policy in Europe Part III: Convergence in the EU: Social and Labour Market Issues 9. Some Theory on the Sustainability of Different Levels of Social Protection in a Monetary Union 10. European Labour Markets under Convergence Pressure 11. Distorted Labour Markets and Revealed Comparative Advantage: A Note on the Single Market and the EU Periphery 12. Social and Employment Policies in the EU: Convergence on a `Third Way' Model? Index