The Reform of the German Works Constitution Act: A Critical Assessment

29 Pages Posted: 7 May 2004

See all articles by John T. Addison

John T. Addison

University of South Carolina - Moore School of Business - Department of Economics; IZA Institute of Labor Economics

Lutz Bellmann

Institute for Employment Research (IAB); Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA)

Claus Schnabel

University of Erlangen-Nuremberg; IZA Institute of Labor Economics

Joachim Wagner

University of Lueneburg - Institute of Economics; Max Planck Society for the Advancement of the Sciences - Max Planck Institute for Economics; IZA Institute of Labor Economics

Abstract

Since 1920, the thrust of German law on workplace codetermination has changed on a number of occasions. We describe the latest swing of the legislative pendulum - favoring works council formation and competence - and evaluate the case for it. We provide new information on the extent of works councils before reviewing the evidence on their economic effects, focusing on some new results from matched-plant data. If the former evidence points to a codetermination deficit, this shortfall does not appear to have negative consequences for workplace productivity, profitability, and employment.

Suggested Citation

Addison, John T. and Bellmann, Lutz and Schnabel, Claus and Wagner, Joachim, The Reform of the German Works Constitution Act: A Critical Assessment. Industrial Relations, Vol. 43, No. 2, pp. 392-420, April 2004. Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=524278

John T. Addison (Contact Author)

University of South Carolina - Moore School of Business - Department of Economics ( email )

The Francis M. Hipp Building
1705 College Street
Columbia, SC 29208
United States
803-777-7400 (Phone)
803-777-6876 (Fax)

HOME PAGE: http://mooreschool.sc.edu/moore/economics/profiles/addison.htm

IZA Institute of Labor Economics

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

Lutz Bellmann

Institute for Employment Research (IAB) ( email )

Regensburger Str. 104
Nuremberg, 90478
Germany
+49 911 179 3046 (Phone)
+49 911 179 3297 (Fax)

Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA)

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

Claus Schnabel

University of Erlangen-Nuremberg ( email )

Institut für Wirtschaftsforschung
Lange Gasse 20
D-90403 Nuernberg
Germany
+49 911 5302 330 (Phone)
+49 911 5302 721 (Fax)

HOME PAGE: http://https://www.arbeitsmarkt.rw.fau.de/english-version/staff/prof-dr-claus-schnabel/

IZA Institute of Labor Economics

Schaumburg-Lippe-Str. 7 / 9
Bonn, D-53072
Germany

Joachim Wagner

University of Lueneburg - Institute of Economics ( email )

PO Box 2440
D-21314 Luneburg
Germany
+49 4131 677 2330 (Phone)
+49 4131 677 2026 (Fax)

HOME PAGE: http://www.uni-lueneburg.de/wifo

Max Planck Society for the Advancement of the Sciences - Max Planck Institute for Economics ( email )

Kahlaische Strasse 10
D-07745 Jena, 07745
Germany

IZA Institute of Labor Economics

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

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