The Netherlands: social and economic normalisation in an era of European Union controversy

Anton Hemerijck and Peter Sleegers

in The Europeanisation of social protection

Published by Policy Press

Published in print September 2007 | ISBN: 9781847420206
Published online March 2012 | e-ISBN: 9781447303794 | DOI:
The Netherlands: social and economic normalisation in an era of European Union controversy

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In recent years, the European integration project has become increasingly controversial in the polarised political landscaped of the Netherlands. The legality of engaging in further deepening and broadening of EU integration, in terms of the further enlargement of the EU and a sensitive constitutional discourse on it, has been challenging in Dutch society, which has been formerly and traditionally been supportive of the EU. This chapter discusses the Netherlands' social and economic normalisation during the period of the EU controversy. The Dutch politicians failed to communicate European policies to their public. Therefore, a political controversy on EU socio-economic policy directions occurred in the Netherlands. While the Dutch socio-economic policy of the 1990s fed the European socio-economic discourse, to which the Kok reports and the Lisbon Strategy testify, the European socio-economic policy agenda has reinforced national reforms in the Netherlands. In recent years, three social policy reforms in the Netherlands were intensified by the EU: the reforms of disability pensions, the prevention of long-term unemployment, and the equal treatment of dossier.

Keywords: European integration; Netherlands; EU integration; Netherlands' social normalisation; Netherlands' economic normalisation; European policies; socio-economic policy; socio-economic discourse; Lisbon Strategy

Chapter.  7839 words. 

Subjects: Comparative and Historical Sociology

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