This essay draws on several analyses on the gender impact of the recession and of austerity policies, in which authors acknowledge a threat to women’s labour market integration and a potential backlash to traditional gender labour structures. We contribute to that literature by asking whether recession and austerity convey a gender effect on educational attainment. Our aim in this essay is to portray the likely effects of austerity measures on gender equality with a focus on women’s participation in tertiary education and to hypothesize the implications of these scenarios for labour market effects, to be tested in future empirical research.
Due to the economic crisis of 2008/2009, households faced drastic decreases in their incomes, the availability of jobs. Additionally, the structure of the labour market changed, while austerity measures and public spending cuts left households with less support and safeguards provided by the state. How have these developments affected the burden of unpaid labour and what influence did this have on gender relations?
It has become a contentious term in- and outside of economic policy: austerity. Allegedly the culprit behind the shortfalls of governments' reaction to the Great Financial Crisis, the policy makes for a spirited debate.
Austerity has been at the center of political controversy following the 2008 financial crisis, invoked by politicians and academics across the political spectrum as the answer to, or cause of, our post-crash economic malaise.
Departing from an analysis of women's employment and changing gender regimes in the pre crisis period, Jill Rubery illustrates how the crisis affects men's and women's employment differently. Afterwards, she discusses the crisis' impact on gender relations. Based on empirical findings, she shows how men were more affected by the recession and women more by austerity and presents possible explanations. Those are furthermore linked to women's employment decisions and prevalent gender regimes. In particular, Rubery discusses cut backs in public spendings on care, flexibilization and the role of conservative gender ideologies.
In the fifth part of the Economics of COVID-19 Webinar by SOAS, Jo Michell sketches out the effects of the COVID-19 pandemic on the wider macroeconomy and warns against a resurgence of austerity politics.
In the interview, Robert Skidelsky discusses the emergence of political influence of a certain school of economic thought and how the success of an economic theory depends on the power relations in the society. He introduces the historical example of Keynesian economics and its replacement by liberal economic theory and policy in the aftermath of the Great Depression, and transfers this historical case to the dominant paradigm of austerity policies in the Europe as response to rising public debts caused by the Financial Crisis. He contrasts austerity policies with a Keynesian approach. Furthermore, he relates the targets of policy to the underlying power structures, for example when not the reduction of unemployment but the protection of financial capital is politically addressed.
Irene van Staveren, professor of pluralist development economics, presents her pluralist teaching method for the introductory level. Based on her textbook “Economics After the Crisis: An Introduction to Economics from a Pluralist and Global Perspective” she suggests to focus on real-world problems and pari passu apply economic theories such as Social economics, Institutional economics, Post-Keynesian economics as well as Neoclassical economics without wasting time to single out the latter. Besides pointing out advantages of such a pluralist method Irene illustrates her approach based on interesting topics such as growth or feminist economics.
Mark Blyth criticises the political inability to solve the persistent economic crisis in Europe against the background of a deflationary environment. Ideological blockades and impotent institutions are the mutually reinforcing causes of European stagnation. The deeper roots lie in the structural change of the economic system since the 1980s, when neoliberalism emerged as hegemonic ideology. This ideology prepared the ground for austerity and resulting deflationary pressures and a strategy of all seeking to export their way out of trouble. Worryingly this is breeding populist and nationalist resentments in Europe.
The module is designed to first present some of the main schools of thought from a historical and methodological perspective. Each week we explore and critically assess the main tenants of each school of thought. In the second part of the module we link history of economic thought and methodology to a specific and contemporary economic question. The second part allows you to engage with current economic issues with an awareness of methodology and methodological differences and with some knowledge of the history of economics.
The Gender strategy of the IMF: The way to go towards gender equality or a mere instrumentalisation of feminism?
Due to the IMF’s focus on gender budgeting, this essay will mainly examine its gender budgeting recommendations as an example of its general inclination towards gender issues and its conception of gender equality. What does the IMF’s focus on gender equality really mean from a critical feminist perspective? What are its main objectives? What does it seek to change and to maintain? What concept or idea of women does it follow and what are the underlying theoretical foundations?
In this essay the author reviews empirical studies in economics that analyze factors behind the rise of nationalist and populist parties in Western countries. He stresses that economic factors (e.g., trade shocks and economic crisis) play a crucial role in the rise of populist parties; however, the discussion of mechanisms driving this trend remains unsatisfying
It is perhaps fitting that the seriousness of the coronavirus threat hit most of the Western world around the Ides of March, the traditional day of reckoning of outstanding debts in Ancient Rome. After all, problems and imbalances have accumulated in the Western capitalist system over four decades, ostensibly since it took the neoliberal road out of the 1970s crisis and kept going along it, heedless of the crises and problems it led to.
What influence do changes in tax policy or state decisions on expenditure have on economic growth? For decades, this question has been controversially debated.
Feminist economics focuses on the interdependencies of gender relations and the economy. Care work and the partly non-market mediated reproduction sphere are particularly emphasised by feminist economics.
Modern Monetary Theory (MMT) is a school of monetary and macroeconomic thought that focuses on the analysis of the monetary and credit system, and in particular on the question of credit creation by the state.
Steve Keen analyses how mainstream economics fails when confronted with the covid-19-pandemic. Mainstream economics has propagated the dismantling of the state and the globalization of production - both of which make the crisis now so devastating. More fundamentally, mainstream economics deals with market systems, when what is needed to limit the virus’s spread is a command system.
Feminist economics is a key component of the movement for pluralism in economics and one that has, to some extent, been acknowledged by the mainstream of the profession. It seeks to highlight issues which affect women because (it claims) they have not traditionally been recognised in a field dominated by men. On top of this, it seeks to carve out a space for women in the discipline, both for intrinsic reasons of fairness and diversity and because it means that women’s issues are more likely to be highlighted going forward.
The workshop introduces into the field of critical political economy and tries to identify the role of finacial markets in capitalism, the reason for financial crises and the relevance of Marx in regard to these topics.
After completing the module, participants should be able to understand the economic consequences of gender inequality. They should be able to explain the contradictions between capital and care, analyze the labor market with a gender perspective and develop the ability to describe phenomena such as public policies taking into account "gender" as a category of analysis.
Dependency in Central and Eastern Europe - Self-reliance and the need to move beyond economic growth
In this essay, the author takes a critical perspective on the pursuit of growth as the solution for providing for environmental sustainability and economic stability in the countries of Central and Eastern Europe. Drawing from the framework of dependency theory and presenting brief insights into European core-periphery relations the author then argues for the implementation of an alternative strategy to development that is built around the concept of self-reliance.
Politics as supermarket? Or how current policy design changes the relationship between the state and its citizens
What are the implications of the politics of "behavioural change"? Alexander Feldmann took a closer look for you on nudging and framing and if this is a legitimate instrument being used by the state to make us behave better in terms of our carbon footprint.
The Great Recession 2.0 is unfolding before our very eyes. It is still in its early phase. But dynamics have been set in motion that are not easily stopped, or even slowed. If the virus effect were resolved by early summer—as some politicians wishfully believe—the economic dynamics set in motion would still continue. The US and global economies have been seriously ‘wounded’ and will not recover easily or soon. Those who believe it will be a ‘V-shape’ recovery are deluding themselves. Economists among them should know better but are among the most confused. They only need to look at historical parallels to convince themselves otherwise.
Caring activities are one central element of feminist economists' analysis – also since in particular unremunerated work is a blind spot in mainstream economics and most other economic paradigms. Those focus on the market sphere: activities are considered as productive and as real labour if they are remunerated and market-intermediated. Goods and services are considered as labour if they create a value which can be traded on the market. Feminist Economics remarks that this perspective creates certain dichotomies and consequent devaluations: unproductive – productive; private – public; unpaid – remunerated OR paid less – well paid; female – male; soft work – hard work; caring – rationality.
The world is still feeling reverberations from the financial crisis of 2008 foreseen by neither politicians nor economists The history of capitalism has been punctuated by major crises exposing the fragility of our entire economic system How has capitalism despite these ruptures managed to each time resurface more resilient and …
Photo by Kaitlyn Ashley on Unsplash The world is still feeling reverberations from the financial crisis of 2008 foreseen by neither politicians nor economists The history of capitalism has been punctuated by major crises exposing the fragility of our entire economic system How has capitalism despite these ruptures managed to …
From religious leaders to heads of state, everyone is talking about economic inequality. What form can such inequality take in different countries? What impact does it have on society? And why should it matter to you?
Popular Assemblies and the Promise of Direct Democracy Many similarities exist between the new movements against austerity that have emerged since 2011 ranging from Taksim Square in Turkey to the Chilean student protests and from Greece to NYC One of them is their return to the principles of direct democracy …
This brief but comprehensive account of the Post Keynesian approach to economic theory and policy is ideal for advanced undergraduate and postgraduate students in economics, public policy and other social sciences. Clear, non-technical and with a strong policy focus, it will also appeal to all of those who are dissatisfied with mainstream economics and wish to explore the alternatives.
In the graveyard of economic ideology, dead ideas still stalk the land.
The recent financial crisis laid bare many of the assumptions behind market liberalism—the theory that market-based solutions are always best, regardless of the problem. For decades, their advocates dominated mainstream economics, and their influence created a system where an unthinking faith in markets led many to view speculative investments as fundamentally safe.
"Despite the rediscovery of the inequality topic by economists as well as other social scientists in recent times, relatively little is known about how economic inequality is mediated to the wider public of ordinary citizens and workers. That is precisely where this book steps in: It draws on a cross-national empirical study to examine how mainstream news media discuss, respond to, and engage with such important and politically sensitive issues and trends.
Those who control the world’s commanding economic heights, buttressed by the theories of mainstream economists, presume that capitalism is a self-contained and self-generating system.