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How Bad is Globalization for Labour Standards in the North?

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  • Alejandro DONADO

    ()
    (University of Wurzburg, Department of Economics)

  • Klaus WALDE

    ()
    (University of Mainz, School of Management and Economics, Universite catholique de Louvain and CESifo)

Abstract

We analyse a world consisting of "the North" and "the South" where labour standards in the North are set by trade unions. Standards set by unions tend to increase output and welfare. There are no unions in the South and work standards are suboptimal. Trade between these two countries can imply a reduction in work standards in the North. Moreover, when trade unions are established in the South, the North, including northern unions, tend to lose. Quantitatively, these effects are small and overcompensated by gains in the South. The existing empirical literature tends to support our findings.

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Bibliographic Info

Paper provided by Université catholique de Louvain, Institut de Recherches Economiques et Sociales (IRES) in its series Discussion Papers (IRES - Institut de Recherches Economiques et Sociales) with number 2010028.

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Length: 27
Date of creation: 30 Aug 2010
Date of revision:
Handle: RePEc:ctl:louvir:2010028

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Keywords: occupational health and safety; trade unions; international trade; welfare;

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  1. Mezzetti, C. & Dinopoulos, E., 1989. "Domestic Unionization And Import Competition," Papers 337, California Davis - Institute of Governmental Affairs.
  2. Ronald B. Davies & Annie Voy, 2006. "The Effect of FDI on Child Labor," University of Oregon Economics Department Working Papers 2007-4, University of Oregon Economics Department, revised 01 Feb 2007.
  3. Edmonds, Eric V., 2007. "Child Labor," IZA Discussion Papers 2606, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).
  4. Eckel, Carsten & Egger, Hartmut, 2009. "Wage bargaining and multinational firms," Journal of International Economics, Elsevier, vol. 77(2), pages 206-214, April.
  5. Alejandro Donado & Klaus Wälde, 2008. "Trade Unions Go Global!," CESifo Working Paper Series 2368, CESifo Group Munich.
  6. Eric Neumayer & Indra de Soysa, 2003. "Trade Openness, Foreign Direct Investment and Child Labor," International Trade 0312001, EconWPA, revised 16 Mar 2004.
  7. Drusilla K. Brown, 2000. "International Trade and Core Labour Standards: A Survey of the Recent Literature," OECD Labour Market and Social Policy Occasional Papers 43, OECD Publishing.
  8. Marcella Alsan & David E. Bloom & David Canning, 2004. "The Effect of Population Health on Foreign Direct Investment," NBER Working Papers 10596, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  9. Booth, Alison L & Chatterji, Monojit, 1998. "Unions and Efficient Training," Economic Journal, Royal Economic Society, vol. 108(447), pages 328-43, March.
  10. Chau, Nancy H & Kanbur, Ravi, 2001. "The Race To the Bottom, From the Bottom," CEPR Discussion Papers 2687, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
  11. Brown, D.K. & Dearorff, A.V. & Stern, R.M., 1993. "International Labor Standards and Trade: A Theoretical Analysis," Working Papers 333, Research Seminar in International Economics, University of Michigan.
  12. Kimberly Ann Elliott & Richard B. Freeman, 2003. "Can Labor Standards Improve under Globalization?," Peterson Institute Press: All Books, Peterson Institute for International Economics, number 338.
  13. Mihir A. Desai & C. Fritz Foley & James R. Hines Jr., 2005. "Foreign Direct Investment and the Domestic Capital Stock," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 95(2), pages 33-38, May.
  14. Levine, David I. & Rothman, Dov, 2006. "Does trade affect child health?," Journal of Health Economics, Elsevier, vol. 25(3), pages 538-554, May.
  15. Nirvikar Singh, 2004. "The Impact of International Labor Standards: A Survey of Economic Theory," International Trade 0412007, EconWPA.
  16. Hervé Boulhol, 2006. "Do capital market and trade liberalization trigger labor market deregulation ?," Cahiers de la Maison des Sciences Economiques bla06062, Université Panthéon-Sorbonne (Paris 1).
  17. Marta Aloi & Manuel Leite-Monteiro & Teresa Lloyd-Braga, . "Unionized Labor Markets and Globalized Capital Markets," Discussion Papers 08/10, University of Nottingham, Centre for Finance, Credit and Macroeconomics (CFCM).
  18. Naylor, Robin, 1997. "Union Wage Strategies and International Trade," The Warwick Economics Research Paper Series (TWERPS) 480, University of Warwick, Department of Economics.
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