Transnational Depoliticisation and Industrial Policy: The European Commission and French Steel (1980–1984)

Moraitis, Alexis (2019) Transnational Depoliticisation and Industrial Policy: The European Commission and French Steel (1980–1984). New Political Economy, 25 (4). pp. 552-571. ISSN 1356-3467

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Abstract

Following the 2008 financial crash, voices have called governments to re-embrace industrial policy and promote industrial development. Such calls presuppose that the past decades witnessed a relative retreat of activist industrial policies. Within international political economy the latter is explained by the limits posed by the structure of global economic governance and globalisation on the state’s interventionist capacities. This article argues that these constraints have enabled states to pursue the transnational depoliticisation of industrial policy and transfer decision-making responsibilities to spheres lying beyond the governmental arena such as transnational institutions. By appealing to supranational economic rules, governments can disclose their own preferences for certain industrial policies and resist pressures to assist declining activities. To substantiate these claims the article proposes an archival investigation of the French government’s management of the steel industry between 1980 and 1984 and its support for a European Commission-led management of restructuring. The findings suggest that the pressures of the Commission played a crucial role in strengthening the government’s effort to implement socially unpopular but economically vital industrial choices.

Item Type:
Journal Article
Journal or Publication Title:
New Political Economy
Uncontrolled Keywords:
/dk/atira/pure/subjectarea/asjc/3300/3305
Subjects:
ID Code:
147311
Deposited By:
Deposited On:
14 Sep 2020 11:00
Refereed?:
Yes
Published?:
Published
Last Modified:
16 Sep 2020 06:25