Explaining Cross-National Variation in Workplace Employee Representation

47 Pages Posted: 7 Jun 2016

See all articles by John Forth

John Forth

National Institute of Economic and Social Research (NIESR)

Alex Bryson

UCL; National Institute of Economic and Social Research (NIESR)

Anitha George

National Institute of Economic and Social Research (NIESR)

Abstract

Across Europe, there are many differing opinions on whether workplace employee representation should be encouraged or discouraged. Yet there is very little evidence on the variations in workplace employee representation across Europe or the reasons for this. We use a workplace survey covering 27 EU countries to show that its incidence is strongly and independently correlated with the degree of centralization in a country's industrial relations regime and the extent of legislative support. Industry rents are also important in explaining trade union presence, but are unimportant in the case of works councils. Turning to the effects of workplace employee representation, we find support for the exit-voice model – traditionally associated with Anglo-Saxon regimes – whereby worker representation is associated with poorer perceptions of the employment relations climate and with lower voluntary quit rates.

Keywords: trade unions, works councils, employee representation, social dialogue

JEL Classification: J51, J53, J83

Suggested Citation

Forth, John and Bryson, Alex and George, Anitha, Explaining Cross-National Variation in Workplace Employee Representation. IZA Discussion Paper No. 9963. Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=2790001

John Forth (Contact Author)

National Institute of Economic and Social Research (NIESR) ( email )

2 Dean Trench Street
Smith Square
London SW1P 3HE
United Kingdom

Alex Bryson

UCL ( email )

20 Bedford Way
London, WC1H 0AL
United Kingdom

National Institute of Economic and Social Research (NIESR) ( email )

2 Dean Trench Street
Smith Square
London, SW1P 3HE
United Kingdom

HOME PAGE: http://www.niesr.ac.uk/staff/staffdetail.php?StaffID=307

Anitha George

National Institute of Economic and Social Research (NIESR)

2 Dean Trench Street
Smith Square
London, SW1P 3HE
United Kingdom

Here is the Coronavirus
related research on SSRN

Paper statistics

Downloads
24
Abstract Views
323
PlumX Metrics