trade unions

Union Density, Productivity, and Wages

We exploit tax-induced exogenous variance in the price of union membership to identify the effects of changes in firm union density on firm productivity and wages in the population of Norwegian firms over the period 2001 to 2012. Increases in union density lead to substantial increases in firm productivity and wages having accounted for the potential endogeneity of unionization. The wage effect is larger in more productive firms, consistent with rent-sharing models.

The Rise of High Involvement Management in Britain

We discuss the nature and genesis of high involvement management (HIM) in Britain. Although an increasing proportion of British workplaces have adopted HIM practices over the last quarter century only a minority of managements have a strong high involvement orientation. HIM is associated with Total Quality Management and other lean production methods but is no more likely to be adopted in a context of enriched jobs than where jobs are more routinized.

Union Organisation: Its Costs and Benefits

Presentation on Union Organisation: Its Costs and Benefits" - LSE conference on "Trade Unions, Inequality and Pay Stagnation"

Union wage effects What are the economic implications of union wage bargaining for workers, firms, and society?

Despite declining bargaining power, unions continue to generate a wage premium. Some feel collective bargaining has had its day. Politicians on both sides of the Atlantic have recently called for the removal of bargaining rights from workers in the name of wage and employment flexibility, yet unions often work in tandem with employers for mutual gain based on productivity growth. If this is where the premium originates, then firms and workers benefit.

Union Coverage and Bargaining Outcomes

Presentation to Leading Change, a TUC workshop for union leaders, University of Warwick. Presents latest evidence on union membership, coverage, organisational capacity and union effectiveness.

Trade Union Membership and Influence, 1999-2012

Presentation to participants in TUC's Leading Change programme.

Covering: union membership; bargaining coverage; organizational and financial resources; influence on wages, fringe benefits and workplace performance;  employees' and employers' perceptions of unions.

Using data from: the Workplace Employment Relations Survey, the Certification Officer, the Labour Force Survey and the British Social Attitudes Survey.

Job Cuts, Job Guarantees and Unions

Using unique nationally representative workplace data this paper shows that unionisation increased the probability of within-workplace job cuts and the incidence of job security guarantees. As theory predicts, both are more prevalent among market-sector workplaces with higher union density and multi-unionism. In the public sector, levels of unionisation affect only job security guarantees, not job cuts. Explanations are developed in terms of union bargaining power and union voice services.

Trade Union Membership and Influence 1999-2009

This paper analyses the continued decline of trade unions in Britain and examines the possible implications for workers, employers, and unions themselves. Membership of trade unions declined precipitously in the 1980s and 1990s. The rate of decline has slowed in the most recent decade, but we find that unions remain vulnerable to further erosion of their membership and influence.

What Makes Unions Effective and What Impact Do They Have?

Presentation to TUC South West Annual Conference

Retaining and Growing Union Membership

Presentation to Unions21 meeting of General Secretaries