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Is the Europeanization of Economic Policy an Epiphenomenon of Globalization?: the case of the European Monetary Union

Cristina Ares, Joint paper with Miguel Anxo Bastos Boubeta

The so called globalization phenomenon can be simply presented as an increase of the mobility of goods, people and ideas; and, from this point of view, it is not essentially a new trend. On the contrary, European integration is a unique economic and political process. But the simultaneity, in the 1980s, of a deepening of the European project and the beginning of the last step of global capitalism, which starts with the fall of communist regimes, explains that sometimes Europeanization (defined as a process of building European-wide institutions, discourses and identities), specially in the field of economic policy, is seen as an epiphenomenon of globalization. This paper aims to refute this assumption in an extreme case of Europeanization: the Monetary Union. A contra factual analysis will be applied to put face to face, on the one hand, the adaptation to Europe experienced by the Member States of the European Union integrated in the Euro Zone, and, on the other, the expected evolution of their former national monetary policies in absence of the European monetary Union in the current step of global capitalism. The conclusion is that Europeanization of monetary policy is not the spontaneous result of globalization, but the successful diffusion of an institutional model seized by a small policy elite which is not fully in accordance with global developments.

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