One of the distinctive characteristics of the German economy appears to be very far from neoliberalism, and that is co-determination: the importance of workers organisations in management, and more generally the recognition that unions play an important role in the economy. Yet I wonder whether this may have had an unintended consequence: the polarisation and politicisation of economic policy advice. The IMK is part of the Hans-Böckler-Foundation, which is linked to the German Confederation of Trade Unions. The IMK was set up in part to provide a counterweight to existing think tanks with strong links to companies and employers. If conflict over wages is institutionalised at the national level, perhaps the influence of ideology on economic policy – in so far as it influences that conflict (see footnote ) – is bound to be greater.