Chapter

The Evolution of Social Pacts

Jelle Visser and Martin Rhodes

in Social Pacts in Europe

Published in print May 2011 | ISBN: 9780199590742
Published online September 2011 | e-ISBN: 9780191728891 | DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.1093/acprof:oso/9780199590742.003.0004
The Evolution of Social Pacts

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Chapter 4 presents the second part of the book’s analytical framework and shifts the focus to the institutionalization of social pacts. The chapter begins by using quantitative evidence to analyse the number and diffusion of social pacts over time and across countries, distinguished by type, scope, and content, before considering the difficulties involved in social pact institutionalization. The chapter compares social pacts with collective labour agreements, considers the differences between dyadic and triadic relationships, and traces the instability of social pacts in part to their discretionary as compared to rules-based character. The chapter presents five key hypotheses—derived from the functionalist, utilitarian, normative, and power-distributive approaches found in new institutionalist analysis—as to how, and via what kinds of mechanisms, social pact institutionalization may occur. Finally, the chapter considers why particular combinations of mechanisms are more likely than others.

Keywords: social pacts; dyadic and triadic relationships; discretionary-based policies; rules-based policies; endogenous mechanisms of institutionalization; exogenous mechanisms of institutionalization

Chapter.  10704 words.  Illustrated.

Subjects: European Union

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