The Role of Collective Bargaining in the Global Economy

The Role of Collective Bargaining in the Global Economy

Negotiating for Social Justice

Edited by Susan Hayter

This book examines the ways in which collective bargaining addresses a variety of workplace concerns in the context of today’s global economy. Globalization can contribute to growth and development, but as the recent financial crisis demonstrated, it also puts employment, earnings and labour standards at risk. This book examines the role that collective bargaining plays in ensuring that workers are able to obtain a fair share of the benefits arising from participation in the global economy and in providing a measure of security against the risk to employment and wages. It focuses on a commonly neglected side of the story and demonstrates the positive contribution that collective bargaining can make to both economic and social goals. The various contributions examine how this fundamental principle and right at work is realized in different countries and how its practice can be reinforced across borders. They highlight the numerous resulting challenges and the critically important role that governments play in rebalancing bargaining power in a global economy. The chapters are written in an accessible style and deal with practical subjects, including employment security, workplace change and productivity, and working time.

Chapter 11: Globalizing Industrial Relations: What Role for International Framework Agreements?

Konstantinos Papadakis

Subjects: economics and finance, labour economics, social policy and sociology, economics of social policy


Konstantinos Papadakis 11.1 INTRODUCTION This chapter aims to address two interrelated questions which are often raised in debates regarding the contribution of International Framework Agreements (IFAs) to promoting collective bargaining and sound industrial relations: what is the impact of IFAs in terms of enlarged possibilities for collective bargaining and sound industrial relations at various levels (holding company, national/local and crossborder)? And under which conditions would IFAs be more effectively implemented? The chapter is structured as follows: section 11.2 describes the rationale of IFAs, their main characteristics, and presents relevant data and theoretical perspectives on their expected impact. This section also discusses certain industrial relations aspects inherent to IFAs. Section 11.3 presents evidence on the possible effectiveness and impact of IFAs at the enterprise, plant/local and cross-border levels, notably in terms of: (a) the implementation of provisions of IFAs; (b) the promotion of sound industrial relations between the parties to the agreement; (c) the provision of a framework for workers to organize at plant and local levels; (d) the facilitation of dispute resolution; and (e) the establishment of a framework for sustainable industrial relations, including times of restructuring. This section also examines the related issue of the role of IFAs in promoting worker solidarity across borders. The conditions necessary for IFAs to realize their potential as effective elements of a cross-border industrial relations system are highlighted in the conclusion. 277 M2578 - HAYTER PRINT.indd 277 18/04/2011 09:19 278 The role of collective bargaining in the global economy 11.2 RATIONALE AND...

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