Combining the disciplines of international political economy, public sector economics and comparative politics, this stimulating book debates whether federalism obstructs institutional adjustment under conditions of a globalized economy, or whether this depends upon the extent to which a given political system is centralized. Axel Hülsemeyer analyzes the ratification of the Single European Act and the Maastricht Treaty, and contrasts these with the implementation of the bilateral free trade agreement between the United States and Canada as well as the NAFTA. Preferential trade agreements themselves are conceptualized as the state response to economic globalization.
Contents: Introduction: globalization, 'the State' and 'the Market'; Globalization and the adjustment of the public sector; Tracing the process of institutional mediation; Ratification through constitutional change: Germany, the Single European Act and the Maastricht Treaty; Implementation with a hitch: Canada, the CUSFTA and the NAFTA; Conclusion: federalism as an obstacle?; Bibliography; Index.