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Norm-Based Trade Union Membership: Evidence for Germany

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  • Goerke, Laszlo

    () (IAAEU, University of Trier)

  • Pannenberg, Markus

    () (Bielefeld University of Applied Sciences)

Abstract

In the absence of closed-shops and discriminatory wage policies, union membership can be explained by the existence of social norms. We describe a model, incorporating institutional features of the German labour market, which explicitly allows for social custom effects in the determination of union membership. Using panel data for Germany, we find evidence for according effects which restrict freeriding. The impact of social norms tends to increase with net union density. Hence, observed reductions in the demand for union membership can weaken the impact of a norm and accentuate the free-rider problem.

Suggested Citation

  • Goerke, Laszlo & Pannenberg, Markus, 2003. "Norm-Based Trade Union Membership: Evidence for Germany," IZA Discussion Papers 962, Institute of Labor Economics (IZA).
  • Handle: RePEc:iza:izadps:dp962
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    More about this item

    Keywords

    trade union membership; Germany; norms; social custom;
    All these keywords.

    JEL classification:

    • D71 - Microeconomics - - Analysis of Collective Decision-Making - - - Social Choice; Clubs; Committees; Associations
    • J51 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Labor-Management Relations, Trade Unions, and Collective Bargaining - - - Trade Unions: Objectives, Structure, and Effects

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