Union Wage Effects: Does Membership Matter?

The Manchester School, Vol. 68, Issue 3, June 2000

Posted: 21 Jul 2001

See all articles by Erling Barth

Erling Barth

Institute for Social Research, Norway; Department of Economics, University of Oslo; IZA Institute of Labor Economics

Oddbjorn Raaum

University of Oslo - Ragnar Frisch Centre for Economic Research

Robin Naylor

University of Warwick - Department of Economics

Abstract

Using a matched employer-employee data set for Norway, we exploit rare information on the union status of both individual employees and their workplaces. We establish two key results. First, we find a positive effect of workplace trade union density on the level of the individual's pay in establishments covered by collective agreements. Second, we find that, conditioning on coverage, the individual union membership differential disappears after controlling for establishment-level union density. The union wage effect is therefore a pure public good, with individual membership conveying a positive wage externality.

Suggested Citation

Barth, Erling and Raaum, Oddbjørn and Naylor, Robin A., Union Wage Effects: Does Membership Matter?. The Manchester School, Vol. 68, Issue 3, June 2000, Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=242843

Erling Barth (Contact Author)

Institute for Social Research, Norway ( email )

Munthesgate 31
0260 Oslo
Norway

Department of Economics, University of Oslo ( email )

PO Box 6706 St Olavs plass
Oslo, N-0317
Norway

IZA Institute of Labor Economics

P.O. Box 7240
Bonn, D-53072
Germany

Oddbjørn Raaum

University of Oslo - Ragnar Frisch Centre for Economic Research ( email )

Gaustadalleen 21
N-0317 Oslo
Norway

Robin A. Naylor

University of Warwick - Department of Economics ( email )

Coventry CV4 7AL
United Kingdom

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