New Political Economy
The causes and consequences of the Euro crisis have led comparative political economy scholars to question whether European integration can accommodate diverse models of capitalism. This special issue addresses two important questions about the compatibility of diverse growth models within the European Union (EU): Are some growth regimes better suited to European integration than others? and does the EU favour a particular constellation of domestic institutions? Contributions within this special issue provide a qualified yes to these questions, concluding that the EU favours export-led growth models whilst it penalises and discourages domestic consumption-oriented growth paths, particularly those that are financed by debt accumulation. While recent comparative capitalism literature highlights that European monetary integrationhas favoured export-led growth regimes, contributions in this special issue outline that the EU’s prioritisation of export-led growth over domestic demand-led growth is present in other facets of integration, including EU accession, financial integration, the free movement of people, fiscal governance and the Europe 2020 growth strategy. Findings here provide important insights for both the European integration and comparative capitalism literature, highlighting that the unique economic ties being forged within the European project may be problematic for those countries outside northwestern Europe and for workers in low-wage domestic sectors.