Does Union Membership Really Reduce Job Satisfaction?

21 Pages Posted: 2 Sep 2004

See all articles by Alex Bryson

Alex Bryson

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

Lorenzo Cappellari

Catholic University of the Sacred Heart of Milan; University of Essex - Institute for Social and Economic Research (ISER); Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA)

Claudio Lucifora

Università Cattolica del Sacro Cuore di Milano ; IZA Institute of Labor Economics

Abstract

We investigate the effect of union membership on job satisfaction. Using linked employer-employee data from the 1998 British Workplace Employee Relations Survey, we analyse the relationship between the membership decision and overall job satisfaction and satisfaction with pay. In this paper we account for the endogenous selection induced by the sorting of workers into unionized jobs. Controlling for both individual and establishment heterogeneity and explicitly modelling the effect of union status, we find that the marked difference in job satisfaction between unionized and non-unionized workers disappears, suggesting that a selection effect, rather than a causal effect, characterizes the relationship.

Suggested Citation

Bryson, Alex and Cappellari, Lorenzo and Lucifora, Claudio, Does Union Membership Really Reduce Job Satisfaction?. British Journal of Industrial Relations, Vol. 42, No. 3, pp. 439-459, September 2004. Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=584208

Alex Bryson (Contact Author)

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

Lorenzo Cappellari

Catholic University of the Sacred Heart of Milan ( email )

Largo Gemelli, 1
Via Necchi 9
Milan, MI 20123
Italy

University of Essex - Institute for Social and Economic Research (ISER)

Wivenhoe Park
Colchester CO4 3SQ
United Kingdom

Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA)

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

Claudio Lucifora

Università Cattolica del Sacro Cuore di Milano ( email )

Department of Economics and Finance
Largo Gemelli, 1
20123 Milano
Italy
+39 027 234 2525 (Phone)
+39 027 234 2781 (Fax)

IZA Institute of Labor Economics

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

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