chapter  3
Who is Entitled to Work and Who is in Charge? Understanding the Legal Framework of European Labour Migration
ByElspeth Guild
Pages 40

Susan Strange sets out three premises as vital to understanding the modern world: first, the position of politics: the exercise of politics is not a monopoly of the state but equally exercised by non-state actors; secondly, power over outcomes is exercised impersonally by markets; and thirdly that authority in society and over economic transactions is legitimately exercised by agents other than states. This chapter examines these three premises from the perspective of labour migration in Western Europe – a field which is perceived as a bastion of state authority. These three premises will be tested against the international legal framework of European labour migration to see whether the claim of states to a monopoly over this form of migration is justified, or whether Strange's observations about the limitations of the state are applicable in this arena. Finally, the authority over economic transactions in the field of labour migration is increasingly exercised by non state actors.