Between Local Interests and International Solidarity: Negotiating Restructuring at General Motors Europe

CERIC Working Paper No. 7

22 Pages Posted: 24 Apr 2011

See all articles by Ian Greer

Ian Greer

University of Greenwich

Marco Hauptmeier

Cornell University - School of Industrial and Labor Relations

Date Written: October 30, 2009

Abstract

At no other firm has transnational worker cooperation been taken further than at General Motors Europe. Worker representatives engaged in European wide mobilization, strikes, and collective bargaining, with the aim of “sharing the pain” of concessions and preventing plant closures. We argue that this is a case of identity work, a deliberate shift in the ideational underpinnings of union strategy, orchestrated by the European Works Council. While trade union strategy was subject to the reshaping of interests due to the objective facts of corporate restructuring, it was also subject to an additional subjective and internal political process of identity work.

Keywords: European Works Councils; trade unionism; General Motors

JEL Classification: J51

Suggested Citation

Greer, Ian and Hauptmeier, Marco, Between Local Interests and International Solidarity: Negotiating Restructuring at General Motors Europe (October 30, 2009). CERIC Working Paper No. 7, Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=1819376 or http://dx.doi.org/10.2139/ssrn.1819376

Ian Greer (Contact Author)

University of Greenwich ( email )

30 Park Row
Greenwich
London, SE10 9LS
United Kingdom

HOME PAGE: http://werugreenwich.wordpress.com/

Marco Hauptmeier

Cornell University - School of Industrial and Labor Relations ( email )

Ithaca, NY 14853-3901
United States

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