The Debt Crisis in the Eurozone: Social Impacts (BOK)
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During the past four years, the countries of the European periphery - the so-called PIIGS (Portugal, Ireland, Italy, Greece and Spain) - have been experiencing an economic-financial crisis that can only be compared to the Great Depression. To solve the crisis, the EU and the IMF instituted bailout programs for the debit countries on conditions of austerity and structural reforms. In this volume, twenty social scientists - sociologists, political economics, political scientists, social demographers - from both the "surplus" and "debit" economy countries of the European Union delve into the causes and the social impacts of this crisis, using both the theoretical and empirical, quantitative and qualitative tools of social sciences. The social impacts cover a range of consequences, including poverty, unemployment, anti-migrant attitudes, a decline of welfare and health indicators, post-traumatic stress disorders, national humiliation, political alienation and social protest. The authors analyse the "international" and the "domestic" causes of the crisis, while some of them underline the importance of both factors. In the concluding chapter, the Editors undertake a synthesis of the previous chapters, and extract a number of policy recommendations that-if adopted - could transform the current financial crisis into a growth-opportunity for the European Union and its member states.