The economic and financial fallout of the Great Recession upended the belief that advanced economies enjoyed some kind of superior inoculation against deep crises. It presented EU states with the unanticipated and unprecedented challenge of coordinating fiscal crisis responses. The EU crisis framework laid out in the European Economic Recovery Plan (EERP) represented an attempt to coordinate not fiscal constraint but, for the first time, fiscal expansion. This chapter places this study within two intertwined crises, the international economic and financial crises and the European Debt Crisis, before going on to present the main empirical puzzle and research questions of the book.
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