Journal Article

EU Employment Law and the European Social Model: The Past, the Present and the Future

Catherine Barnard

in Current Legal Problems

Volume 67, issue 1, pages 199-237
Published in print January 2014 | ISSN: 0070-1998
Published online August 2014 | e-ISSN: 2044-8422 | DOI: https://dx.doi.org/10.1093/clp/cuu015
EU Employment Law and the European Social Model: The Past, the Present and the Future

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If the critics are right, the European Union’s (EU’s) social model is dead and that is the end of it. Those on the right may well be dancing on its grave; those more sympathetic might mourn its passing. My view is more sanguine. I shall argue that the European social model is certainly facing unprecedented challenges. However, I will suggest that these challenges, caused in part by the EU’s response to the crisis but more generally resulting from a growing hostility towards the European Union project as a whole, are not terminal and that there is—and should be—a continued role for the European social model. The article therefore considers what is meant by the European social model (ESM) and why the ESM is important. It then examines why the ESM, and its employment dimension in particular, is facing such difficulties before recognizing that, in fact, the EU’s history demonstrates that the ESM has, in fact, a long-standing ability to regenerate and resurrect itself in different guises. Given this regenerative capacity, the article will conclude by considering the form EU social policy might take going forward.

Journal Article.  15895 words. 

Subjects: Jurisprudence and Philosophy of Law ; Law and Society ; Politics and Law

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