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Health Equity in a Globalizing EraPast Challenges, Future Prospects$
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Ronald Labonté and Arne Ruckert

Print publication date: 2019

Print ISBN-13: 9780198835356

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: May 2019

DOI: 10.1093/oso/9780198835356.001.0001

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Neoliberalism and its health discontents

Neoliberalism and its health discontents

(p.47) Chapter 3 Neoliberalism and its health discontents
Health Equity in a Globalizing Era

Ronald Labonté

Arne Ruckert

Oxford University Press

‘Contemporary’ globalization, the main focus of this book, is generally dated back to the early 1980s. At that time a series of economic and oil price crises collided with the election of conservative governments in the world’s (then) most powerful countries and the risk of sovereign debt defaults in the developing world to create space for the political adoption of neoliberal economic orthodoxy. This adoption of neoliberal practices and theory played out over three successive waves: a ‘roll-back’ of state welfare or social protection provisions mandated through structural adjustment policies in the 1980s and 1990s, a ‘roll-out’ in the form of the tremendous growth in global financialized economy in the 1990s and early 2000s leading to the 2008 global financial crisis, and the subsequent imposition of fiscal austerity as a globally diffused structural adjustment redux. Each wave has been accompanied by unequally distributed health shocks within and between countries.

Keywords:   contemporary globalization, neoliberalism, structural adjustment, financial liberalization, deregulation, global financial crisis, austerity, fiscal multipliers

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