Assessing the Impact of the Workplace Relations Act From 1996 to 2004: Increasing Flexibility or Decreasing Collectivism?
AbstractThis paper tests the impact of the Workplace Relations Act 1996 (WRA) by looking at changes in the behaviour of a panel of workplaces in the Illawarra Region of NSW between 1996 and 2004. The results support the proposition that the major impact has been on the level of unionisation and union density in these workplaces. There was virtually no expansion in the use of enterprise bargaining or AWAs, although there was a small but significant increase in non-union agreement making. Rather than encourage the use of single jurisdictions to register awards and collective agreements, in the Illawarra at least, there was a strong trend to dual State and Federal jurisdictions. Thus the WRA has been relatively ineffective in achieving flexibility and decentralised employee relations goals but has resulted in a high level of decollectivisation.
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Bibliographic InfoPaper provided by School of Economics, University of Wollongong, NSW, Australia in its series Economics Working Papers with number wp05-30.
Length: 20 pages
Date of creation: 2005
Date of revision:
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Postal: School of Economics, University of Wollongong, Northfields Avenue, Wollongong NSW 2522 Australia
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Workplace Relations Act; Illawarra region; flexibility; decollectivisation;
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- Stephen Bell, 1994. "Australian Business Associations: New Opportunities and Challenges," Australian Journal of Management, Australian School of Business, vol. 19(2), pages 137-158, December.
- Ann Hodgkinson, 2004. "Strike Activity Under Enterprise Bargaining: Economics or Politics?," Australian Journal of Labour Economics (AJLE), Bankwest Curtin Economics Centre (BCEC), Curtin Business School, vol. 7(4), pages 439-457, December.
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