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Reforming the Ideal(ised) Model(s) of Danish Labour Market Policies

Magnus Paulsen Hansen (Roskilde University, Denmark)
Janine Leschke (Copenhagen Business School, Denmark)

Public Governance in Denmark

ISBN: 978-1-80043-713-5, eISBN: 978-1-80043-712-8

Publication date: 23 February 2022


Globally, Denmark stands out in terms of achieving high employment rates, containing unemployment and providing a labour market model combining flexibility, security and activation with a strong role for the social partners. The Danish labour market institutions and policies are seen as the catalyst for the transformation from industrial economy to a globalised, post-industrial and knowledge-based economy in which socio-economic equality and workforce security go hand in hand with competitiveness and the adaptability of business. In the 2000s, this mutual relationship came to be known as the Danish flexicurity model. Meanwhile, as a policy blueprint, ‘flexicurity’ has never really influenced Danish politics, and the reforms implemented since the 2000s have deviated from the premises of the model. This paper critically assesses the Danish model and its institutional components. It tracks the emergence of the Danish collective bargaining model as well as the flexicurity model. It scrutinises the challenges and performance of the current Danish labour market institutions and policies in a comparative perspective and discusses the extent to which the Danish experiences can and should be imitated abroad.



Hansen, M.P. and Leschke, J. (2022), "Reforming the Ideal(ised) Model(s) of Danish Labour Market Policies", Krogh, A.H., Agger, A. and Triantafillou, P. (Ed.) Public Governance in Denmark, Emerald Publishing Limited, Leeds, pp. 39-56.



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