[CfP] Conference 2016 – The political economy of Portugal

The political economy of Portugal: social relations in times of austerity, European integration, and alternatives

While Greece and Spain have been in the spotlight of debates about the crisis and alternatives to austerity, the case of Portugal has received far less attention from academia, the media and the left. In 2011, Portugal was the third European country to request an external bailout from the EC, IMF and ECB. The Memorandum of Understanding with the Troika set out to restructure a broad range of social relations in Portugal, and beyond cuts in fiscal expenditure, this was done through alterations in the regime for collective bargaining and an attack on trade unions, changes in property relations, in the welfare system, and in the regulation of housing. Unlike Greece, Portugal has been the “favoured pupil” of the creditor institutions; it has exited the Memorandum and is now back on open financial markets. This panel seeks to explore the various manifestations of the crisis in Portugal, the way that the crisis has been managed through austerity, the multiple interventions in financial institutions from 2008 and onwards, Portugal’s experience in the European project and its changing place in the world order over the last decades, and related to this, the progressive transition to neoliberalism. The panel wishes to receiver proposals on the broader political economy of Portugal, including the following topics:

  • Competing explanations of the crisis in Portugal/the Eurozone
  • Comparative analyses of the crisis in Portugal
  • The implementation of the Memorandum and of the strategy of internal devaluation
  • Resistance and responses from unions and social movements
  • Portugal’s integration with Europe
  • Lessons from the Carnation Revolution of 1974
  • Neoliberalism and financialisation in Portugal
  • The recent experience with the left-wing government alliance (PS, Left Bloc, PCP)

The panel is organised under the neoliberalism stream. Abstracts (500 words maximum) should be submitted by April 11, 2016. To submit your abstract, please go to the Electronic Proposal Form, and carefully follow the complete instructions there.

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