To what extent do international organizations, global policy networks, and transnational policy entrepreneurs influence domestic policy makers? Have we entered a new phase of globalization that, unbeknownst to most citizens, shapes policies that used to be the sole domain of domestic politics? Privatizing Pensions reveals how international institutions--such as the World Bank, USAID, and other transnational policy actors--have played a seminal role in the development, diffusion, and implementation of new pension reforms that are transforming the postwar social contract in more than thirty countries worldwide, including the United States.
Mitchell Orenstein shows how transnational actors have driven change in a policy area once thought to be beyond reform in many countries, and how they have done so by deploying their unique resources and legitimacy to promote new ideas, recruit disciples worldwide, and provide a broad range of technical assistance to government reformers over the long term. He demonstrates that while domestic decision makers may retain veto power over these reforms--which replace traditional social security with individual pension savings accounts--transnational policy makers play the role of "proposal actors," shaping the information, preferences, and resources of their domestic clients.
Privatizing Pensions argues that even the most quintessentially domestic areas of policy have been thoroughly globalized, and that these international influences must be better understood.
"Orenstein reports on the efforts and impact of so-called transnational actors--international organizations, global policy networks, and multilateral and bilateral aid agencies--in contributing to significant reforms in the 'development, diffusion, and implementation' of new pension privatization plans. . . . An excellent book that will be treasured by scholars and policy makers."--H.I. Liebling, Choice
"Privatizing Pensions offers well-researched evidence to back theoretical claims. . . . The book is convincing, and useful for graduate seminars dealing with issues ranging from globalization to social policy reform. Scholars will find the book useful because it formulates a systematic framework for the analysis of the transnational actors-policy development nexus."--Daniel Béland, Political Studies Review
"Orenstein's book makes an important contribution to the role of international agencies in national policymaking."--Peter Lloyd-Sherlock, Cambridge Journals
"Orenstein's book provides both a powerful theoretical statement of transnational actors' importance and a careful empirical template for studying their influence. All scholars of the welfare state will need to read and come to terms with these insights."--Andrew Roberts, American Journal of Sociology
"In this carefully crafted, comprehensive study, Mitchell Orenstein provides a persuasive analysis of the significance of transnational policy actors in pension privatization around the world. The empirical evidence is strong and the theoretical framework is applicable to a wide range of social policy issues. The book presents an important challenge to state-centric perspectives, as well as many of the interest-based assumptions of political economy approaches. This is a first-rate study which deserves attention from both academic and policy-oriented audiences."--Robert R. Kaufman, Rutgers University
Table of Contents:
List of Figures and Tables ix
CHAPTER ONE: The Rise of Pension Privatization 14
CHAPTER TWO: Evaluating the Impact of Transnational Actors 36
CHAPTER THREE: A Model of Transnational Actor Influence 55
CHAPTER FOUR: The Transnational Campaign for Pension Privatization 71
CHAPTER FIVE: Domestic Enactment of Pension Privatization 95
CHAPTER SIX: Transnational Influence and Its Limits 141
CHAPTER SEVEN: Analyzing Transnational Public Policy 166
Appendix: Understanding Pension Privatization 179