Changing Work and Community Identities in European Regions: by John Kirk, Sylvie Contrepois, Steve Jefferys PDF

By John Kirk, Sylvie Contrepois, Steve Jefferys

This publication juxtaposes the reports of areas that experience lived or reside via commercial transition in coal-mining and production centres all through Europe, beginning easy methods to a deeper realizing of the depth of swap and of the way paintings is helping form new identities.

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The recruitment of migrant workers from Southern Europe was intensified in the 1960s to meet the huge labour requirements of German manufacturing. Already, however, although largely unobserved at the time, the proportion of manufacturing workers within the total workforce had reached its zenith in 1961 and started to decrease slowly thereafter. The process of tertiarisation, the shift towards service industries, which had firstly been described by Colin Clark (1957) and had become a prominent ongoing debate following Jean Fourastié (1969), had begun in Germany.

Millions of former East Germans lost their jobs and became dependent on the welfare state. Lars Meier and Markus Promberger 29 Structural changes – tertiarisation, globalisation and technical change – have been the architect of the socio-economic situation since the 1980s, accompanied by persistent unemployment, cuts in budgets for social policy and changes in the tax systems to benefit big companies and the wealthy, creating rising property inequalities. Deregulation of industrial relations, anti-inflation programmes and lower or falling real wages can be viewed as an end to the earlier worker-friendly redistribution policies in general, though never reaching ‘Thatcherite’ dimensions.

2 per cent (Statistisches Bundesamt, 2009). Increasing wage differentials, as well as a general rise in income inequality (OECD, 2008; Frick and Grabka, 2009), are also affected by the business cycle – alternating periods of growth and decline in the economy (Schumpeter, 1954) – and can therefore not be directly attributed to welfare state reform in its entirety. Even the critical merger of long-term unemployment benefit with basic income support did not solely create new poverty. Although several hundred thousand people have faced cuts in their transfer incomes, some who had not previously been included in the welfare system benefited.

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