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An Inter-establishment Study of Union Recognition and Membership in Great Britain

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  • Gregg, P
  • Naylor, Robin

Abstract

In the absence of compulsion, union membership density in U.K. private sector establishments is extremely varied. Around one quarter of establishments without recognized unions have union densities above 10 percent while under half of the establishments with recognized unions had density above 90 percent. Yet the progressive decline in the closed shop since 1984 means that understanding why people join trade unions without compulsion is an increasingly relevant question, demanding analysis at a disaggregate level. This paper explores the 1984 WIRS dataset and concludes that workplace characteristics, including workforce composition and management attitudes, are the major influences once recognition is controlled for. Yet the variation in density across workplaces with unions implies there is much unions can do to increase density even in an environment which is hostile toward the achievement of recognition. Copyright 1993 by Blackwell Publishers Ltd and The Victoria University of Manchester

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Bibliographic Info

Article provided by University of Manchester in its journal The Manchester School of Economic & Social Studies.

Volume (Year): 61 (1993)
Issue (Month): 4 (December)
Pages: 367-85

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Handle: RePEc:bla:manch2:v:61:y:1993:i:4:p:367-85

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Cited by:
  1. Georgios Marios Chrysanthou, 2007. "Determinants of Trade Union Membership in Great Britain During 1991-2003," Discussion Papers 07/01, Department of Economics, University of York.
  2. Robin Naylor, 1995. "Unions in Decline?," Nordic Journal of Political Economy, Nordic Journal of Political Economy, vol. 22, pages 127-142.
  3. Schnabel, Claus, 2002. "Determinants of trade union membership," Discussion Papers 15, Friedrich-Alexander-University Erlangen-Nuremberg, Chair of Labour and Regional Economics.
  4. 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.

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