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What Has Happened to Union Recognition in Britain?

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  • Disney, Richard
  • Gosling, Amanda
  • Machin, Stephen

Abstract

This paper examines the determinants of establishment-level union recognition status using data from the three Workplace Industrial Relations Surveys of 1980. 1984 and 1990. Our theoretical approach argues that product and labour market variables dated at (or around) the establishment's setup should be considered the crucial determinants of recognition status. Confirmation of these predictions is round for private-sector manufacturing establishments in the econometric analysis. Of particular interest are: (1) the nonlinear relationship between historic industry quasi-rents and recognition status and the stability of this aspect of the model over the three data-sets; and (2) a marked downward shift in recognition probabilities that occurred during the 1980s, which seems to be largely a consequence of the failure to organize new establishments set up in the 1980s. Copyright 1996 by The London School of Economics and Political Science.

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Bibliographic Info

Article provided by London School of Economics and Political Science in its journal Economica.

Volume (Year): 63 (1996)
Issue (Month): 249 (February)
Pages: 1-18

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Handle: RePEc:bla:econom:v:63:y:1996:i:249:p:1-18

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Cited by:
  1. Stephen Machin, 2000. "Union Decline in Britain," British Journal of Industrial Relations, London School of Economics, vol. 38(4), pages 631-645, December.
  2. Addison, John T. & Heywood, John S. & Wei, Xiangdong, 2001. "Unions and Plant Closings in Britain: New Evidence from the 1990/98 WERS," IZA Discussion Papers 352, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).
  3. Blanchflower, David G., 2006. "A Cross-Country Study of Union Membership," IZA Discussion Papers 2016, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).
  4. De la Rica Goiricelaya, Sara & Card, David E., 2004. "The effect of firm-level contracts on the structure of wages: evidence from matched employer-employee data," DFAEII Working Papers 2004-06, University of the Basque Country - Department of Foundations of Economic Analysis II.
  5. Georgios Marios Chrysanthou, 2008. "Determinants of trade union membership in Great Britain during 1991-2003," Economics Working Papers we082315, Universidad Carlos III, Departamento de Economía.
  6. Brown, W. & Ryan, P., 2003. "The Irrelevance of Trade Union Recognition? A Comparison of Two Matched Companies," Cambridge Working Papers in Economics 0323, Faculty of Economics, University of Cambridge.
  7. Pencavel, John, 2003. "The Surprising Retreat of Union Britain," IZA Discussion Papers 818, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).
  8. Georgios Marios Chrysanthou, 2008. "Estimating union wage effects in Great Britain during 1991-2003," Economics Working Papers we082214, Universidad Carlos III, Departamento de Economía.
  9. De la Rica Goiricelaya, Sara & González de San Román Rosado, Ainara, 2007. "The Impact of Firm Level Contracting on Wage Levels and Inequality: Spain 1995-2002," DFAEII Working Papers 2007-07, University of the Basque Country - Department of Foundations of Economic Analysis II.
  10. Brown, W & Hudson, M & Deakin, S & Pratten, C, 2001. "The Limits of Statutory Trade Union Recognition," ESRC Centre for Business Research - Working Papers wp199, ESRC Centre for Business Research.
  11. Wiji Arulampalam & Alison L. Booth, 2000. "Union status of young men in Britain: a decade of change," Journal of Applied Econometrics, John Wiley & Sons, Ltd., vol. 15(3), pages 289-310.
  12. Gardner, Jonathan & Oswald, Andrew J., 2001. "What Has Been Happening to the Quality of Workers’ Lives in Britain?," The Warwick Economics Research Paper Series (TWERPS) 617, University of Warwick, Department of Economics.
  13. Richard Disney & Jonathan Haskel & Ylva Heden, 2003. "Restructuring and productivity growth in uk manufacturing," Economic Journal, Royal Economic Society, vol. 113(489), pages 666-694, 07.
  14. Robin Naylor, 1995. "Unions in Decline?," Nordic Journal of Political Economy, Nordic Journal of Political Economy, vol. 22, pages 127-142.
  15. A Charlwood, 2001. "Why Do Non-Union Employees Want To Unionise? Evidence from Britain," CEP Discussion Papers dp0498, Centre for Economic Performance, LSE.
  16. Haile, Getinet Astatike, 2012. "Union Decline in Britain: Is Chauvinism Also to Blame?," IZA Discussion Papers 6536, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).

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