Cornell Journal of Law and Public Policy

Article Title

State Inc.


Marketization of the State, State-individual interactions


The central objective of this paper is to put the "marketization of the state" debate into context, both on the descriptive level and on the normative level, by viewing it through the prisms of the ideal types of interaction between states and individuals, and against the background of global competition. At the outset of the paper, we begin by presenting various manifestations of "citizenship for sale" and the marketization of the state-individual interaction. We then turn to portray two ideal types of state-individual interactions, which we termed "the democratic model" and "the consumerist model," and depicted the erosion of the state-market dichotomy as a shift from the democratic to the consumerist ideal type. But this, we claim, is only part of the story: for, when global competition is taken into account these two ideal types no longer serve as discrete end points on the spectrum. Rather, they become inherently interconnected, and the infiltration of market logic into the state-individual interaction becomes inevitable. In a world in which the state is forced to compete for residents and resources, its position as a market player inevitably infiltrates into its interaction with individuals, and defines its political realm. The political realm, in other words, is constituted by the market, and cannot operate in a manner that is detached from consumerist logic.