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The Political Economy of Collective Labour Legislation in Taiwan

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  • James Wang

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Abstract

This article provides a seminal analysis of collective labour legislation in Taiwan. A chronological review of Taiwan’s legislative process suggests that the context of incorporation, institutional framework, mechanisms for delivering reforms, and sequence of reforms together shape the legislative outcomes of labour reforms at the collective level. While most labour legislation was revised and passed after the preceding sequence of economic transition, the reform of collective labour rights was greatly constrained by the flexible labour-market structure. In order for politicians to form new alliances with labour organizations, legislation of collective labour rights was a strategy to cultivate support during electoral periods. Consequently, the industrial relations changed following the enactment of substantial reform-oriented labour legislation. Theore-tically, the historical analysis of legislative procedure unveils evolutionary reform paths for collective labour rights in new democracies. At the same time, empirically, Taiwan demonstrates an alternative reform path in combination with incremental steps and progressive agendas. For new democracies of small economy, a window of opportunity for the progress in collective labour legislation remains open today, albeit with limitations.

Suggested Citation

  • James Wang, 2010. "The Political Economy of Collective Labour Legislation in Taiwan," Journal of Current Chinese Affairs - China aktuell, Institute of Asian Studies, GIGA German Institute of Global and Area Studies, Hamburg, vol. 39(3), pages 51-85.
  • Handle: RePEc:gig:chaktu:v:39:y:2010:i:3:p:51-85
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    File URL: http://hup.sub.uni-hamburg.de/giga/jcca/article/view/303
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    References listed on IDEAS

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    1. Stephan Haggard, 2000. "Political Economy of the Asian Financial Crisis, The," Peterson Institute Press: All Books, Peterson Institute for International Economics, number 107.
    2. Chu, Yun-han, 1989. "State structure and economic adjustment of the East Asian newly industrializing countries," International Organization, Cambridge University Press, vol. 43(04), pages 647-672, September.
    3. Chang, Ha-Joon, 2000. "The Hazard of Moral Hazard: Untangling the Asian Crisis," World Development, Elsevier, vol. 28(4), pages 775-788, April.
    4. Kang, David C., 2002. "Bad Loans to Good Friends: Money Politics and the Developmental State in South Korea," International Organization, Cambridge University Press, vol. 56(01), pages 177-207, December.
    5. Dore, Ronald, 1998. "Asian Crisis and the Future of the Japanese Model," Cambridge Journal of Economics, Oxford University Press, vol. 22(6), pages 773-787, November.
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    Cited by:

    1. Chun-Yi Lee, 2014. "Learning a Lesson from Taiwan? A Comparison of Changes and Continuity of Labour Policies in Taiwan and China," Journal of Current Chinese Affairs - China aktuell, Institute of Asian Studies, GIGA German Institute of Global and Area Studies, Hamburg, vol. 43(3), pages 45-70.
    2. Huang, Li-Hsuan & Huang, Julia Hsin-Yi, 2013. "Does Labor Market Rigidity Matter for Economic Performance? Evidence from the Four Asian Tigers," MPRA Paper 57905, University Library of Munich, Germany.

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