Luigi Burroni, Gemma Scalise

When actors matter. Agency, historical legacy and institutions in models of capitalism

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Keywords: Capitalist Systems; Inequality; Political Economy; Economic Sociology.

This paper deals with two of the main topics in the debate on varieties of capitalism: first, the process of convergence or divergence between the different models; second, the identification of factors affecting the diverse outcomes in terms of inclusive growth in European countries. The analysis shows that for the two dimensions considered here, competitiveness and inclusion, models of capitalism continue to follow different paths, both in their policy configuration and outcomes. In this process, a key role is played by the agency of three actors: State, social partners and firms. Different forms of agency of these actors are identified and the diverse trajectories of the models of capitalism are highlighted, as result of the tension between institutional structure, historical legacy and the agency of these actors.

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