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Slip Sliding Away: Further Union Decline in Germany and Britain

  • Addison, John T.

    ()

    (University of South Carolina)

  • Bryson, Alex

    ()

    (National Institute of Economic and Social Research (NIESR))

  • Teixeira, Paulino

    ()

    (University of Coimbra)

  • Pahnke, André

    ()

    (IfM Bonn)

This paper presents the first comparative analysis of the decline in collective bargaining in two European countries where that decline has been most pronounced. Using workplace-level data and a common model, we present decompositions of changes in collective bargaining and worker representation in the private sector in Germany and Britain over the period 1998-2004. In both countries within-effects dominate compositional changes as the source of the recent decline in unionism. Overall, the decline in collective bargaining is more pronounced in Britain than in Germany, thus continuing a trend apparent since the 1980s. Although workplace characteristics differ markedly across the two countries, assuming counterfactual values of these characteristics makes little difference to unionization levels. Expressed differently, the German dummy looms large.

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Paper provided by Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA) in its series IZA Discussion Papers with number 4760.

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Length: 36 pages
Date of creation: Feb 2010
Date of revision:
Publication status: published in: Scottish Journal of Political Economy, 2011, 58 (4), 490 - 518
Handle: RePEc:iza:izadps:dp4760
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  1. Fitzenberger, Bernd & Kohn, Karsten & Wang, Qingwei, 2006. "The Erosion of Union Membership in Germany: Determinants, Densities, Decompositions," IZA Discussion Papers 2193, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).
  2. Alex Bryson & Rafael Gomez, 2003. "Why have workers stopped joining unions?," LSE Research Online Documents on Economics 20022, London School of Economics and Political Science, LSE Library.
  3. Alex Bryson & Rafael Gomez, 2005. "Why Have Workers Stopped Joining Unions? The Rise in Never-Membership in Britain," British Journal of Industrial Relations, London School of Economics, vol. 43(1), pages 67-92, 03.
  4. John T. Addison & Alex Bryson & Paulino Teixeira & André Pahnke & Lutz Bellmann, 2009. "The Extent of Collective Bargaining and Workplace Representation: Transitions between States and their Determinants. A Comparative Analysis of Germany and Great Britain," GEMF Working Papers 2009-14, GEMF - Faculdade de Economia, Universidade de Coimbra.
  5. Addison, John T. & Schnabel, Claus & Wagner, Joachim, 2006. "The (Parlous) State of German Unions," IZA Discussion Papers 2000, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).
  6. Susanne Kohaut & Claus Schnabel, 2003. "Tarifverträge - nein danke!?, Ausmaß und Einflussfaktoren der Tarifbindung west- und ostdeutscher Betriebe," Journal of Economics and Statistics (Jahrbuecher fuer Nationaloekonomie und Statistik), Justus-Liebig University Giessen, Department of Statistics and Economics, vol. 223(3), pages 312-331, May.
  7. Alex Bryson & Rafael Gomez, 2005. "Why have workers stopped joining unions? Accounting for the rise in never-membership in Britain," LSE Research Online Documents on Economics 360, London School of Economics and Political Science, LSE Library.
  8. Stephen Machin, 2000. "Union Decline in Britain," British Journal of Industrial Relations, London School of Economics, vol. 38(4), pages 631-645, December.
  9. Schnabel, Claus & Wagner, Joachim, 2005. "Who Are the Workers Who Never Joined a Union? Empirical Evidence from Germany," IZA Discussion Papers 1658, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).
  10. Ben Jann, 2006. "FAIRLIE: Stata module to generate nonlinear decomposition of binary outcome differentials," Statistical Software Components S456727, Boston College Department of Economics, revised 26 May 2008.
  11. Oaxaca, Ronald L. & Ransom, Michael R., 1994. "On discrimination and the decomposition of wage differentials," Journal of Econometrics, Elsevier, vol. 61(1), pages 5-21, March.
  12. Paul Willman & Alex Bryson, 2006. "Accounting for collective action: resource acquisition and mobilization in British unions," LSE Research Online Documents on Economics 19772, London School of Economics and Political Science, LSE Library.
  13. Ronald Oaxaca, 1971. "Male-Female Wage Differentials in Urban Labor Markets," Working Papers 396, Princeton University, Department of Economics, Industrial Relations Section..
  14. Brown , W. & Bryson , A. & Forth , J., 2008. "Competition and the Retreat from Collective Bargaining," Cambridge Working Papers in Economics 0831, Faculty of Economics, University of Cambridge.
  15. Schnabel, Claus & Zagelmeyer, Stefan & Kohaut, Susanne, 2005. "Collective bargaining structure and its determinants : an empirical analysis with British and German establishment data," IAB Discussion Paper 200516, Institut für Arbeitsmarkt- und Berufsforschung (IAB), Nürnberg [Institute for Employment Research, Nuremberg, Germany].
  16. repec:nsr:niesrd:341 is not listed on IDEAS
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