Full Employment Abandoned: Shifting Sands and Policy Failures

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Edward Elgar Publishing, Jan 1, 2008 - Business & Economics - 320 pages
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This book by William Mitchell and Joan Muysken is both important and timely. It deals with the issue of the abandonment of full employment as an objective of economic policy in the OECD countries. It argues persuasively that macroeconomic policy has been

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This book is a tour de force in not only understanding the problems associated with employment and unemployment, but it has positive policy solutions in addressing the current problems encountered with employment and unemployment.They do a great job tracing historically where, when and why, post World War two unemployment problems developed, using empirical evidence, incisive analysis and attention to detail. Most importantly they show how constructive change can be introduced successively to bring about real, full employment.This book isn't for undergraduates or lay persons as it assumes you will have already come to terms with the use of technical terms and labour data. The book is designed for professional labour economists and policy officers.
The most interesting part of the book is how Bill and Joan demolish with flair the flaws with the dominant NAIRU theory. I was also delighted that they developed an alternative to the NAIRU, the Non-Accelerating-Inflation-Buffer Employment Ratio (NAIBER) which needs further recognition by labour economists. It's a must read for all labour economists and is a worthy contribution to Post-Keynesian economic theory and policy.


1 The full employment framework and its demise
2 Early views on unemployment and the Phillips curve
3 The Phillips curve and shifting views on unemployment
the hoax that undermined full employment
shifting sands and policy failures
5 The shift to full employability
the new mantra of macroeconomics
7 The neglected role of aggregate demand
foundations for an active policy
8 A monetary framework for fiscal policy activism
9 Buffer stocks and price stability
the urgency of full employment

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About the author (2008)

William Mitchell, Professor of Economics, Centre of Full Employment and Equity, University of Newcastle, Australia and Joan Muysken, Professor of Economics, CofFEE-Europe, University of Maastricht, The Netherlands

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