This study is a collection of essays on monetary-fiscal interactions within the European Monetary Union (EMU). Our research focuses on a theoretical evaluation of the Stability and Growth Pact (SGP) and its huge reform debate. The topics chosen are not on the top economists' agenda because the whole field of research has been too young and has not fully been developed, since the beginning of the Monetary Union, in 1999. We analyze the Stability and Growth Pact in new and extended theoretical model frameworks. We ask the following questions on the 'political agenda': 1. What is an optimal fiscal rule in a monetary union? 2. What are internal constraints in a monetary union? 3. Why do larger countries have more problems with the SGP? Our theoretical findings lead us to elaborate a "new" reform proposal on the Stability and Growth Pact. We find a mechanism that allows for a more efficient and credible enforcement of the SGP than in the old and meanwhile reformed Stability Pact. Our aim of providing a comprehensive overview of the fiscal architecture of the EMU is feasible only by means of a close link between methods of economics and political science. This interdisciplinary approach and new field of research supplies a highly promising way of reaching a deeper insight into the present and future interlockings - both on the national as well as the supranational level.
Worker participation has been subject to controversial debate in Europe. Although the member states' traditions in industrial relations and especially in worker participation vary greatly, the Council of Ministers agreed on some directives in this regard, recently: the EWC directive (94/45/EC) and the information/consultation directive (2002/14/EC), and the directive (2001/86/EC) supplementing the Statute for a European Company with regard to the involvement of employees, which emphasises voluntary negotiations between employees' representatives, a so-called special negotiating body, and the management. The latter directive does not only provide information and consultation procedures but also provisions regarding board-level representation. For that reason, the focus of this paper is on the European Company (Societas Europaea = SE). In this context, the fundamental provisions regarding the SE are presented. After discussing some exemplary cases in order to demonstrate the practical implications of this legal initiative regarding employee involvement, some issues arising are examined.