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Determinants of Union Membership in 18 EU Countries : Evidence from Micro Data, 2002/03

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  • Schnabel, Claus
  • Wagner, Joachim

Abstract

Using representative individual-level data from the first round of the European Social Survey fielded in 2002/03, this paper provides an empirical analysis of unionization in 18 countries of the European Union. We show that union density varies considerably in Europe, ranging from 84 per cent in Denmark to 11 per cent in Portugal. Estimating identical models for each country, we find that individuals? probability of union membership is significantly affected by their personal characteristics, their attitudes and the characteristics of their workplace, whereas social factors seem to play a minor role. The presence of a union at the workplace and employees? attitudes concerning strong unions are the two variables with the most wide-spread effects on unionization. -- Unter Verwendung von repräsentativen Individualdaten aus der ersten Runde des 2002/03 durchgeführten European Social Survey liefert dieser Beitrag eine empirische Analyse der Gewerkschaftsmitgliedschaft in 18 Ländern der Europäischen Union. Wir zeigen, dass der gewerkschaftliche Organisationsgrad in Europa deutlich variiert, und zwar von 84 Prozent in Dänemark bis zu 11 Prozent in Portugal. Durch Schätzung gleicher Modelle für jedes Land finden wir heraus, dass die individuelle Wahrscheinlichkeit einer gewerkschaftlichen Mitgliedschaft signifikant von persönlichen Merkmalen, Einstellungen und Arbeitsplatzcharakteristiken abhängt, während soziale Faktoren eine geringe Rolle zu spielen scheinen. Die Anwesenheit einer Gewerkschaft am Arbeitsplatz und die Einstellungen der Beschäftigten zu starken Gewerkschaften sind die beiden Variablen, deren Auswirkungen auf die Mitgliedschaft am weitesten verbreiteten sind.

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Bibliographic Info

Paper provided by Friedrich-Alexander-University Erlangen-Nuremberg, Chair of Labour and Regional Economics in its series Discussion Papers with number 31.

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Date of creation: 2005
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Handle: RePEc:zbw:faulre:31

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Web page: http://www.arbeitsmarkt.wiso.uni-erlangen.de/english-version/
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Keywords: Union membership; union density; Europe;

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References

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  1. Bulkley, G. & Myles, G.D., 1996. "Individually Rational Union Membership," Discussion Papers 9612, Exeter University, Department of Economics.
  2. Schnabel, Claus, 2002. "Determinants of trade union membership," Discussion Papers 15, Friedrich-Alexander-University Erlangen-Nuremberg, Chair of Labour and Regional Economics.
  3. A L Booth & M Chatterji, . "Union Membership And Wage Bargaining When Membership Is Not Compulsory," Dundee Discussion Papers in Economics 048, Economic Studies, University of Dundee.
  4. Booth, Alison L & Chatterji, Monojit, 1993. "Reputation, Membership and Wages in Open Shop Trade Union," Oxford Economic Papers, Oxford University Press, vol. 45(1), pages 23-41, January.
  5. Jelle Visser, 2002. "Why Fewer Workers Join Unions in Europe: A Social Custom Explanation of Membership Trends," British Journal of Industrial Relations, London School of Economics, vol. 40(3), pages 403-430, 09.
  6. Corneo, Giacomo, 1995. "Social custom, management opposition, and trade union membership," European Economic Review, Elsevier, vol. 39(2), pages 275-292, February.
  7. Wiji Arulampalam & Alison L. Booth & Mark L. Bryan, 2004. "Training in Europe," Journal of the European Economic Association, MIT Press, vol. 2(2-3), pages 346-360, 04/05.
  8. Alex Bryson & Rafael Gomez & Morley Gunderson & Noah Meltz, 2002. "Youth-Adult Differences in the Demand for Unionisation: Are American, British, and Canadian Workers All That Different?," CEP Discussion Papers dp0515, Centre for Economic Performance, LSE.
  9. Daniele Checchi & Claudio Lucifora, 2002. "Unions and labour market institutions in Europe," Departmental Working Papers 2002-16, Department of Economics, Management and Quantitative Methods at Università degli Studi di Milano.
  10. Schnabel, Claus & Wagner, Joachim, 2003. "Trade union membership in Eastern and Western Germany: convergence or divergence?," Discussion Papers 18, Friedrich-Alexander-University Erlangen-Nuremberg, Chair of Labour and Regional Economics.
  11. Nicola-Maria Riley, 1997. "Determinants of Union Membership: A Review," LABOUR, CEIS, vol. 11(2), pages 265-301, 06.
  12. Daniele Checchi & Jelle Visser, 2002. "Pattern persistence in european trade union density," Departmental Working Papers 2002-01, Department of Economics, Management and Quantitative Methods at Università degli Studi di Milano.
  13. George A. Akerlof, 1978. "A theory of social custom, of which unemployment may be one consequence," Special Studies Papers 118, Board of Governors of the Federal Reserve System (U.S.).
  14. Naylor, Robin & Raaum, Oddbjorn, 1993. "The Open Shop Union, Wages, and Management Opposition," Oxford Economic Papers, Oxford University Press, vol. 45(4), pages 589-604, October.
  15. Naylor, R. & Cripps, M., 1991. "An Economic Theory of the Open Shop Trade Union," The Warwick Economics Research Paper Series (TWERPS) 372, University of Warwick, Department of Economics.
  16. Booth, Alison L, 1985. "The Free Rider Problem and a Social Custom Model of Trade Union Membership," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, MIT Press, vol. 100(1), pages 253-61, February.
  17. Monroe Berkowitz, 1954. "The economics of trade union organization and administration," Industrial and Labor Relations Review, ILR Review, Cornell University, ILR School, vol. 7(4), pages 575-578, July.
  18. Bernhard Ebbinghaus & Jelle Visser, 1998. "When Institutions Matter: Union Growth and Decline in Western Europe, 1950-95," MZES Working Papers 30, MZES.
  19. Naylor, R., 1989. "A Social Custom Model Of Collective Action," The Warwick Economics Research Paper Series (TWERPS) 327, University of Warwick, Department of Economics.
  20. John H. Pencavel, 1971. "The demand for union services: An exercise," Industrial and Labor Relations Review, ILR Review, Cornell University, ILR School, vol. 24(2), pages 180-190, January.
  21. Jones, Stephen R G & McKenna, C J, 1994. "A Dynamic Model of Union Membership and Employment," Economica, London School of Economics and Political Science, vol. 61(242), pages 179-89, May.
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Cited by:
  1. Blanchflower, David G., 2006. "A Cross-Country Study of Union Membership," IZA Discussion Papers 2016, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).
  2. Joachim Wagner, 2010. "From estimation results to stylized facts. Twelve recommendations for empirical research in international activities of heterogeneous firms," Working Paper Series in Economics 186, University of Lüneburg, Institute of Economics.
  3. Goerke, Laszlo & Pannenberg, Markus, 2011. "Trade union membership and dismissals," Labour Economics, Elsevier, vol. 18(6), pages 810-821.

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