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Wage Bargaining, Union Membership, and the Organization of Unemployment Insurance

The paper offers a theoretical analysis of a labor market institution known as the Gent system, which is a system where unions run unemployment insurance (UI) through government-subsidized UI funds. This sytem is practiced in four Nordic countries with comparatively very high unionization rates. The analysis shows that the Gent system is more conducive to unionization than a compulsory UI system if the Gent system is heavily subsidized by the government or if workers are strongly risk averse. Moreover, a rise in the share of benefits financed by union members is likely to reduce wages as well as union membership.

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Paper provided by Uppsala University, Department of Economics in its series Working Paper Series with number 1996:17.

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Length: 36 pages
Date of creation: 15 Sep 1996
Date of revision:
Publication status: Published in Labour Economics, 1999, pages 397-415.
Handle: RePEc:hhs:uunewp:1996_017
Contact details of provider: Postal: Department of Economics, Uppsala University, P. O. Box 513, SE-751 20 Uppsala, Sweden
Phone: + 46 18 471 25 00
Fax: + 46 18 471 14 78
Web page: http://www.nek.uu.se/
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  1. Kiander, Jaakko, 1993. "Endogenous unemployment insurance in a monopoly union model when job search matters," Journal of Public Economics, Elsevier, vol. 52(1), pages 101-115, August.
  2. Jakobsson, Ulf, 1976. "On the measurement of the degree of progression," Journal of Public Economics, Elsevier, vol. 5(1-2), pages 161-168.
  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. Holmlund, Bertil & Lundborg, Per, 1989. "Unemployment insurance schemes for reducing the natural rate of unemployment," Journal of Public Economics, Elsevier, vol. 38(1), pages 1-15, February.
  5. 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.
  6. Neumann, George & Pedersen, Peder J. & Westergard-Nielsen, Niels, 1991. "Long-run international trends in aggregate unionization," European Journal of Political Economy, Elsevier, vol. 7(3), pages 249-274, October.
  7. Lockwood, Ben & Manning, Alan, 1993. "Wage setting and the tax system theory and evidence for the United Kingdom," Journal of Public Economics, Elsevier, vol. 52(1), pages 1-29, August.
  8. 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.
  9. Holmlund, Bertil & Lundborg, Per, 1988. " Unemployment Insurance and Union Wage Setting," Scandinavian Journal of Economics, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 90(2), pages 161-72.
  10. Farber, Henry S, 1978. "Individual Preferences and Union Wage Determination: The Case of the United Mine Workers," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 86(5), pages 923-42, October.
  11. Calmfors, L. & Forslund, A., 1989. "Wage Setting In Sweden," Papers 430, Stockholm - International Economic Studies.
  12. Alan Carruth & Andrew Oswald, 1984. "Miners' Wages in Post-War Britain: An Application of a Model of Trade Union Behavior," Working Papers 558, Princeton University, Department of Economics, Industrial Relations Section..
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