Urban unemployment in Latin America and Southern Europe under structural adjustment and austerity
Desempleo urbano en América Latina y el Sur de Europa bajo el ajuste estructural y la austeridad
This article examines and compares the rise of unemployment in the major metropolitan areas of Latin America under structural adjustment and of Southern Europe under austerity. It suggests that, despite the dismal failure of structural adjustment programs to foster economic growth and notwithstanding its negative sociospatial impacts, Southern Europe has been imposed after 2008 a neoliberal macroeconomic reform that recalls the market fundamentalism of the Washington Consensus. Based on quantitative evidence, this article concludes that austerity has fueled unemployment in the largest metropolitan areas of Greece, Italy, Portugal, and Spain in the aftermath of the financial crisis, like the IMF-imposed structural adjustment programs did in Argentina, Brazil, Chile, Mexico, Peru, and Uruguay during the 1990s and early 2000s. As the private losses of large and small financial entities at risk of bankruptcy after years of reckless behavior were socialized and transformed into unsustainable public indebtedness, the social majorities of the periphery of the Eurozone have been forced to deal with the negative externalities of financial deregulation under neoliberal globalization.