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The concept has been made very popular recently by André Sapir's study:

Globalisation and the Reform of European Social Models (pdf) - Background document for the presentation at ECOFIN Informal Meeting in Manchester, 9 September 2005

As described elsewhere, it identifies 4 models, based on whether they are efficient (Scandinavian, Anglo) or not (Rhineland, Meditteranean) and fair (Scandinavian, Rhineland) or not (Anglo, Mediterranean). The study itself cleary makes the Mediterranean model the worst, and the Scandinavian the best, with the other two in between, with different political choices.

The study has been grabbed by various parties, mostly in the business press, and you can now read the "definitive" proof that the Anglo model is better than the Rhineland one as it is supposedly more efficient.

Efficient being the only criteria of our times, Anglo and Scandinavian economies are thus both symbols that "reform" (i.e. cheaper labor) is what's needed everywhere.

Eric Le Boucher often falls for that trap. He alternates between insightful columns, bringing to France much needed economic literacy, and simple regurgitation of the "efficiency" talking points that show France in economic hell.


In the long run, we're all dead. John Maynard Keynes

by Jerome a Paris (etg@eurotrib.com) on Sun Nov 27th, 2005 at 04:54:15 AM EST
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