The Power of Labor to Grieve: The Impact of the Workplace, Labor Market, and Power-Dependence on Employee Grievance Filing

Posted: 22 Jul 2004

See all articles by Samuel Bacharach

Samuel Bacharach

Cornell University - School of Industrial and Labor Relations

Peter Bamberger

Technion-Israel Institute of Technology - The William Davidson Faculty of Industrial Engineering & Management

Abstract

The authors examine a model of employee grievance activity that encompasses both workplace and labor market determinants and attempts to reconcile inconsistent findings in the literature by taking into account the possible moderating effects of labor power. A multi-level analysis of data from 1996-97 on 1,383 blue-collar workers suggests that labor market factors influenced grievance activity much less directly than workplace characteristics did, and that the nature of these influences was more complex than has previously been hypothesized. Specifically, consistent with power-dependence theory, the authors find that the direct effects of at least one labor market factor, the wage premium, were likely to be contingent on labor power, and that the labor market itself may have moderated the effects of certain workplace factors on employee grievance filing in a manner consistent with efficiency wage theory.

Keywords: Grievances, union power, labor power

JEL Classification: J51, J52

Suggested Citation

Bacharach, Samuel and Bamberger, Peter, The Power of Labor to Grieve: The Impact of the Workplace, Labor Market, and Power-Dependence on Employee Grievance Filing. Industrial and Labor Relations Review, Vol. 57, No. 4, pp. 518-539. Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=566124

Samuel Bacharach (Contact Author)

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

Institute for Workplace Studies
Ithaca, NY 14853-3901
United States
212-340-2850 (Phone)
212-340-2893 (Fax)

Peter Bamberger

Technion-Israel Institute of Technology - The William Davidson Faculty of Industrial Engineering & Management ( email )

Haifa 32000
Israel
972-4-829-4510 (Phone)

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