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Economic policy is often separated from broader discussions of public policy, due to disciplinary barriers between economists and policy analysts. Yet, in all developed nations, ‘economics is married, if only at common law, to politics’ (Dahl and Lindblom, 1976: xlv). This is, first, because of the continuing influence of states on economic activity, both within and beyond domestic borders. The extent to which competitive markets can arise, consolidate and grow in the absence of (predominantly state) authority has preoccupied political economists for decades (see Hayek, 1988; and Polanyi, 2001 , for contrasting views). Regardless of this, it remains indisputable that, even in those nations traditionally viewed as following a ‘laissez-faire’ approach to economic policy, governments and their bureaucracies play an essential role in funding, controlling, organizing and informing economic activity. As this chapter will show, this remains the case despite the influence of globalization.
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