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Transition into modernity takes very different roads, depending on the sequencing of bureaucracy and democratic regime. This is demonstrated by comparing Sweden and…
Transition into modernity takes very different roads, depending on the sequencing of bureaucracy and democratic regime. This is demonstrated by comparing Sweden and Greece. At an early stage of the long-term modernisation of Swedish society, due to early penetration of the internal territory and before the extension of suffrage and political modernisation, a number of state organisations were established at the interstices between state and society, creating direct relations between the state and society. The impressive Lantmäteriet, the organisation of tax authorities, the establishment of authorities for registering the population and the Tabellverket are typical illustrations of such organisational structures. Such organisations functioned as social mechanisms that elucidated society making it legible and thus strengthened the infrastructural capacity of the state. In Greece, where the state was built after political modernisation, the establishment of similar organisations proved to be more difficult. Although there is evidence that similar Swedish practices were known in Greece to be possible paths, they were not chosen. The establishment of a land registry system, for instance, was discussed in the decades prior to the 1871 land reform. On other issues, such choices could not be materialised given opposition or political counter-mobilisation to abolish the reforms after they were approved by parliament. These reform efforts were rather short-lived or countered by new reforms and exemptions, creating an ambiguous labyrinth of regulations of state–society relations and a state without the capacity to intervene in society and implement logistically political decisions throughout the realm. On the whole, the state remained a distant entity, mostly a distrusted one, and relations between the state and society were mediated by parties and by social and kinship-based networks.
What drives this diffusion process? One neo-institutional answer to this question is that new models of nationhood, organization, and social identity exist in the larger…
What drives this diffusion process? One neo-institutional answer to this question is that new models of nationhood, organization, and social identity exist in the larger world environment (Meyer, 2009, p. 36ff). Because they are external, these “identities” and models can be adopted without huge costs and without necessarily entailing the reorganization of society or actors’ personalities. Thus the models of modern society can spread quickly because they are relatively easy to assume and because they have high legitimacy in the international environment. Conformity produces instrumental rewards as well. And it also signals to significant “other” nations and international bodies that a nation has accepted modernity and its responsibilities (see Boli & Thomas's discussion, 1999). Thus, foreign aid, loans, and credit may flow quickly to those developing countries that enact modern institutional structures like mass education and democratic elections.
There is hardly any other field of knowledge where there is moreconflict or controversy between ideas and solutions proposed bytheoreticians and statesmen than in…
There is hardly any other field of knowledge where there is more conflict or controversy between ideas and solutions proposed by theoreticians and statesmen than in politics. To date, adequate methodological tools have not been developed which enable the truth or validity of the liberal or conservative approaches to be tested. A new research programme using a simultaneous equilibrium versus disequilibrium approach is proposed which has full application in politics as well as in economics and the social sciences. This research programme shows the organic relationship between society, state, economy, money and form of government, and thus leads to a methodological unification of all the social sciences, to a new principia politica.
Much potential has been ascribed to the emergence and possibilities of a “global civil society,” one that takes the concept of civil society and civic activism and…
Much potential has been ascribed to the emergence and possibilities of a “global civil society,” one that takes the concept of civil society and civic activism and involvement beyond the traditional confines of the nation-state, and moves it instead into a globalized and increasingly politically integrated context. In general, the concept of global civil society has been treated as a positive development, with considerable attention being paid to the emancipatory and participatory opportunities that it presents. This essay explores the other side of the equation, i.e., the marginalization of national and European-level civil society and these participatory and emancipatory benefits in Central and Eastern Europe during a process of globalization and EU integration. Drawing from the emerging literatures on global civil society, this paper compares the normative and empirical emphases of that literature with the experiences and opinions of Central and Eastern European environmental NGOs. It examines how Central and Eastern European environmental movements have moved toward becoming more interconnected both in Europe and worldwide, yet are marginalized in favor of a style of environmental policy-making emerging from Brussels that emphasizes technocracy, scientific over public knowledge, and a top-down approach to the policy-making process. As a result, many of the democratic elements of civil society found at the national level have became neglected at the European and the global levels, replacing democratic politics (at least in the form of social movements) with the emergence of supranational technocratic institutions.
In the United Kingdom and elsewhere, the move from government to governance has been well documented (Stoker, 1998; Rhodes, 1996, 1997). In the global North, governance is…
In the United Kingdom and elsewhere, the move from government to governance has been well documented (Stoker, 1998; Rhodes, 1996, 1997). In the global North, governance is understood as a response to complexity and a recognition that many problems cannot be solved by government alone, whereas in democracies across the North and South, there is a concern to address the democratic deficit and [re]legitimize the state. In both contexts, new governance spaces and opportunities have emerged for non-governmental actors to engage in the process. Interest in community or “third sector” participation has spread around the globe, albeit with very different expressions in different contexts, and in many cases at the insistence of international financial institutions. Deacon (2007, p. 15) describes such global trends as “the contested terrain of emerging global governance” in which he includes both international non-governmental organizations and transnational social movements. Although this shift represents new opportunities, the extent to which the spaces for participation offer a new vision of the public domain is contested (Fung & Wright, 2003; Cornwall & Coelho, 2007).
Against the danger of a lost generation of Syrian children, both Turkish state and civil society organizations (CSO) have developed strategies to bridge the education gap…
Against the danger of a lost generation of Syrian children, both Turkish state and civil society organizations (CSO) have developed strategies to bridge the education gap of Syrian children. In that context, this chapter explores the relationship between the Turkish state and civil society in education provision for non-camp Syrian refugees between 2011 and 2016. Presenting civil society as a theoretical framework in refugee education, this study aims to contribute to the debates on education in an era of mass displacement on an institutional level. The role of civil society against the state in education for Syrian refugees is put under scrutiny with an emphasis on the repercussions of the unprecedented number of non-citizen students for state-centered, secular, and monocultural visions of education. In doing so, this study uses policy documents between 2011 and 2016 circulated by Ministry of National Education and data gathered from interviews conducted with representatives of state and CSOs.
Purpose – The discourse about civil society is closely tied to the role of collective action in general, and of social movements in particular. Yet the origins of the…
Purpose – The discourse about civil society is closely tied to the role of collective action in general, and of social movements in particular. Yet the origins of the recent emphasis on civil society are located in the 1980s – the time period during which the wave of neoliberalism began its rise and spread.
Design/methodology/approach – In order to properly situate the concept of civil society and related debates, they must be linked to efforts to delegitimate and demonize the state that also started gaining momentum during that decade.
Findings – The historical context of its emergence suggests that civil society may not be so much an analytical category for purposes of social research, but a theoretical category that is imbued with political content, both positively and negatively – both as a means to promote progressive ends, and as an expression of the context in which those ends started to face mounting resistance.
Research limitations/implications – At the very least, the concept of civil society has a tendency to distract – both by design and by default – from important questions and challenges, such as those related to the role and persistence of structures of inequality in early 21st century global civilization.
Originality/value – A promising starting point to circumnavigate the counterproductive consequences of the use and abuse of the civil society concept and debate for social research may be its explicitly dynamic conceptualization.
The economic science is again in a crisis and a new solution prolegomena to any future study in economics, finance and other social sciences has just been published by the…
The economic science is again in a crisis and a new solution prolegomena to any future study in economics, finance and other social sciences has just been published by the International Institute of Social Economics in care of the MCB University Press in England. The roots of the major financial and economic problems of our time lie in an open conflict between theory and practice. In the 1930s and before the conflict was between classical theory and given realities. In the 1990s the conflict appears between the now prevailing modern, Keynesian theory and the actual realities. In addition during the twentieth century a great argument developed between the two schools of thought, argument which is not yet settled. In one sentence, the prolegomena tried and was successful to solve the conflict between theory and practice and the big doctrinal dispute of the twentieth century. It was a struggle of research and observation over half a century between 1947 and 1997.
According to the traditional Soviet view, the Soviet economic society, based essentially on governmental and collective farm property and overall national planning, is…
According to the traditional Soviet view, the Soviet economic society, based essentially on governmental and collective farm property and overall national planning, is “socialist”, and has been so since Stalin's proclamation to that effect in the 1930s. Most Western observers, Marxist and non‐Marxist, recognise these two socio‐institutional features of the Soviet politico‐economic system and ascribe substantial importance to them. Beyond this point, interpretations differ considerably. Five alternative views may be distinguished. These contending perspectives argue that Soviet economic society is: