Few developing countries have succeeded in simultaneously providing good jobs and access to social services for all. Large informal sectors and segmented social policies that provide benefits to only a small minority are among the problems that have hampered developing countries' ability to secure the double incorporation to the market and to social services. This book reviews Costa Rica's experience as one of the few successful exceptions. The authors concentrate on the essential role of the state in expanding public employment, promoting small firms and cooperatives and creating generous and universal social services. In explaining why the state implemented these policies, the authors go beyond dominant democratic-centred explanations and highlight the emergence of a new elite of small and medium producers, and the role of international ideas. The book also recognizes Costa Rica's struggles to maintain the double incorporation during the recent period of neoliberal globalization. It concludes with eight lessons.
1. A Country That Tamed an Elusive Challenge
2. Two Distinct Phases of Market Incorporation
3. The Social Policy Regime: Creation, Expansion and Resilience
4. The State as the Central Actor: Elites, Ideas and Legacies
5. Conclusion: What can we Learn from the Costa Rican Case?
Juliana Martínez Franzoni is Associate Professor at the University of Costa Rica.
Diego Sánchez-Ancochea is University Lecturer in the Political Economy of Latin America at the University of Oxford.
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