Advanced Search
MyIDEAS: Login to save this article or follow this journal

Strategic Choices in Pluralist and Unitarist Employment Relations Regimes: A Study of Australian Telecommunications


Author Info

  • Peter Ross
  • Greg J. Bamber
Registered author(s):


    Using interview data collected between 1992 and 2009, the authors explore how deregulation of the Australian telecommunications sector and re-regulation of the labor market affected employment relations (ER) strategies at Telstra, Australia’s for¬mer telecommunications monopoly. Labor market re-regulation reversed much of the previous institutional support for union activity, and unions struggled to adjust to this changed institutional context. Telstra’s ER strategies included large-scale downsizing and outsourcing. It moved dramatically toward unitarist (anti-union) ER approaches, with a shift away from collective bargaining toward individual employment contracts. This history raises a more general question of the extent to which employers make strategic ER choices autonomously and the extent to which such choices reflect the influence of the national institutional context. The authors conclude that while the changing institutional context—in this case, primarily government regulation—facili¬tated Telstra’s strategic choices, management ideology was an important intervening variable in determining such choices.

    Download Info

    If you experience problems downloading a file, check if you have the proper application to view it first. In case of further problems read the IDEAS help page. Note that these files are not on the IDEAS site. Please be patient as the files may be large.
    File URL:
    Download Restriction: At, all visitors can get free full text downloads of articles published between April 2003 and 18 months prior to today's date. A subscription is required for full-text downloads of more recent articles. Researchers can find older issues of the Review at

    As the access to this document is restricted, you may want to look for a different version under "Related research" (further below) or search for a different version of it.

    Bibliographic Info

    Article provided by ILR Review, Cornell University, ILR School in its journal ILR Review.

    Volume (Year): 63 (2009)
    Issue (Month): 1 (October)
    Pages: 24

    as in new window
    Handle: RePEc:ilr:articl:v:63:y:2009:i:1:p:24

    Contact details of provider:
    Fax: 607-255-8016
    Web page:
    More information through EDIRC

    Order Information:
    Postal: 381 Ives East, Cornell University, Ithaca, NY 14853-3901

    Related research



    No references listed on IDEAS
    You can help add them by filling out this form.



    This item is not listed on Wikipedia, on a reading list or among the top items on IDEAS.


    Access and download statistics


    When requesting a correction, please mention this item's handle: RePEc:ilr:articl:v:63:y:2009:i:1:p:24. See general information about how to correct material in RePEc.

    For technical questions regarding this item, or to correct its authors, title, abstract, bibliographic or download information, contact: (ILR Review).

    If you have authored this item and are not yet registered with RePEc, we encourage you to do it here. This allows to link your profile to this item. It also allows you to accept potential citations to this item that we are uncertain about.

    If references are entirely missing, you can add them using this form.

    If the full references list an item that is present in RePEc, but the system did not link to it, you can help with this form.

    If you know of missing items citing this one, you can help us creating those links by adding the relevant references in the same way as above, for each refering item. If you are a registered author of this item, you may also want to check the "citations" tab in your profile, as there may be some citations waiting for confirmation.

    Please note that corrections may take a couple of weeks to filter through the various RePEc services.