'Unstable boundaries?' Evaluating the 'new regulation' within employment relations

Miguel Martínez Lucio, Robert MacKenzie

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


The 'emergence' of the 'market' as the basis of economic and political decision-making has become a main focus of debate within the social sciences since the late 1970s. Even while those opposing the growing centrality of neo-classical economics and market-oriented political discourses remain a significant academic constituency, within their ranks there has been a growing realization that regulatory mechanisms, and in particular the role of the state, have nevertheless been the subject of extensive changes. Alternative schools of thought have argued in terms of the way in which such mechanisms have been refashioned. Regulation has become, in the words of Regini and Majone, 'transferred' and the 'boundaries' between regulator and regulated 'changed': the regulatory process has been seen to shift at the macro/national level and at the micro/enterprise level. While supporting the general argument that it is the boundaries of regulation which are to be discussed, not its presence, we shall nevertheless argue that these changes are, if anything, more contentious and that a set of ironies emerges which politicize regulation even further. © 2004 Taylor and Francis Ltd.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)77-97
Number of pages20
JournalEconomy and Society
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - Feb 2004


  • Boundaries
  • Decentralization
  • Deregulation
  • Employment
  • Marketization
  • Privatization
  • Regulation
  • State


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