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Determinants of Member Satisfaction with Unions in South Korea


  • Kuruvilla, S.
  • Frenkel, S.


This paper uses a large sample of Korean union members working in different industries and occupations to test a model of union satisfaction. The results suggest that internal union relations --members representation and union leader effectiveness-- are the most important determinants of members' satisfaction with their union. We argue that this supports the proposition that unions that rely on decentralized collective bargaining as the prime method of employment regulation depend heavily on internal union relations for their effectiveness. This is particularly the case in Korea where the state has shown limited sympathy for independent trade unionism and where collective workplace relations remain relatively informal. We conclude that internal union relations contribute to union governance, effectiveness, and legitimacy, all of which are likely to affect members' satisfaction with their union.

Suggested Citation

  • Kuruvilla, S. & Frenkel, S., 1997. "Determinants of Member Satisfaction with Unions in South Korea," Papers 97-14, Aarhus School of Business - Department of Economics.
  • Handle: RePEc:fth:aascbu:97-14

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    Cited by:

    1. Damiano Fiorillo & Nunzia Nappo, 2014. "Job satisfaction in Italy: individual characteristics and social relations," International Journal of Social Economics, Emerald Group Publishing, vol. 41(8), pages 683-704, August.

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    JEL classification:

    • J51 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Labor-Management Relations, Trade Unions, and Collective Bargaining - - - Trade Unions: Objectives, Structure, and Effects


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