Explaining the Younger-Older Worker Union Density Gap: Evidence from New Zealand

24 Pages Posted: 25 Mar 2005

See all articles by Peter Haynes

Peter Haynes

University of Auckland

Jack Vowles

Victoria University of Wellington

Peter Boxall

University of Auckland - Business School

Abstract

This paper uses two recent large-scale surveys in New Zealand to test the various reasons given for lower rates of union membership among younger workers. Younger workers' disproportionate location in smaller workplaces and those industries where union reach is lowest accounts for a substantial part of their lower union density. Along with the tendency of younger workers to explore their options through labour turnover, this factor offers a much better explanation for the younger-older worker union density gap than do assertions about a growth in individualism in Generations X and Y.

Suggested Citation

Haynes, Peter and Vowles, Jack and Boxall, Peter, Explaining the Younger-Older Worker Union Density Gap: Evidence from New Zealand. British Journal of Industrial Relations, Vol. 43, No. 1, pp. 93-116, March 2005. Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=688639

Peter Haynes (Contact Author)

University of Auckland ( email )

Private Bag 92019
Auckland
New Zealand

Jack Vowles

Victoria University of Wellington ( email )

P.O. Box 600
Wellington, 6140
New Zealand

Peter Boxall

University of Auckland - Business School ( email )

12 Grafton Rd
Private Bag 92019
Auckland, 1010
New Zealand

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