Employer Association Responses to the Effects of Bargaining Decentralization in Australia and Italy: Seeking Explanations from Organizational Theory

32 Pages Posted: 22 Feb 2016

See all articles by Peter Sheldon

Peter Sheldon

University of New South Wales - School of Management

Raoul Nacamulli

Università degli Studi di Milano-Bicocca - Center for Interdisciplinary Studies in Economics, Psychology & Social Sciences (CISEPS)

Francesco Paoletti

SDA Bocconi; Università degli Studi di Milano-Bicocca - Center for Interdisciplinary Studies in Economics, Psychology & Social Sciences (CISEPS)

David E. Morgan

University of New South Wales - School of Management

Date Written: March 2016

Abstract

The literature has neglected to analyse employer associations as organizations facing potential environmental threats to their financial sustainability. We examine associations' responses to collective bargaining decentralization, a major, contemporary threat. Using a qualitative, comparative case approach, we examine eight associations — four each in Australia and Italy — to develop a model of response types. Stronger decentralization effects increase associations' exposure to new and heightened competition, which in turn produces stronger association responses. These include prioritizing commercial over associational objectives. We analyse responses using strategic choice and resource dependence theories, finding that associations use both. However, the decision how to combine them reflects environmental conditions as well as choices linking organizational purpose and financial sustainability.

Suggested Citation

Sheldon, Peter and Nacamulli, Raoul and Paoletti, Francesco and Morgan, David E., Employer Association Responses to the Effects of Bargaining Decentralization in Australia and Italy: Seeking Explanations from Organizational Theory (March 2016). British Journal of Industrial Relations, Vol. 54, Issue 1, pp. 160-191, 2016. Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=2735196 or http://dx.doi.org/10.1111/bjir.12061

Peter Sheldon (Contact Author)

University of New South Wales - School of Management ( email )

Sydney, NSW 2052
Australia

Raoul Nacamulli

Università degli Studi di Milano-Bicocca - Center for Interdisciplinary Studies in Economics, Psychology & Social Sciences (CISEPS) ( email )

Piazza dell'Ateneo Nuovo, 1
Milano, 20126
Italy

Francesco Paoletti

SDA Bocconi ( email )

Via Bocconi 8
Milan, Milan 20136
Italy

Università degli Studi di Milano-Bicocca - Center for Interdisciplinary Studies in Economics, Psychology & Social Sciences (CISEPS) ( email )

Piazza dell'Ateneo Nuovo, 1
Milano, 20126
Italy

David E. Morgan

University of New South Wales - School of Management ( email )

Sydney, NSW 2052
Australia

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