Institutional Resources as a source of trade union power in Southern Europe

Journal article


Rigby, M. (2018). Institutional Resources as a source of trade union power in Southern Europe. European Journal of Industrial Relations. 24 (2), pp. 129-143.
AuthorsRigby, M.
Abstract

Abstract
Institutional resources are one of four sources of power available to trade unions (Gumbrell –McCormick and Hyman, 2013). Literature has tended to pay more attention to associational and organizational power and to emphasize the indispensable but problematic character of institutional resources. This paper examines the role of institutional resources in three Southern European countries (Greece, Portugal and Spain) which share common characteristic including post dictatorship political settlements; recent economic crises; external intervention.
Comparative analysis draws out the distinctive role and character of institutional resources in Spanish industrial relation. It shows how their Durkheimian characteristics form part of the explanation of the continuity in the Spanish industrial relations system but also relates continuity to the way in which institutional resources have retained the engagement of key actors by being compatible with their self -interest.
The paper acknowledges the limitations of trade union dependence upon institutional resources, pointing to the plasticity displayed by industrial relations institutions in Spain in terms of labour market outcomes but argues that institutional security and continuity are an essential platform and a precondition for trade unions to be able to develop and exploit other sources of power.
Key Words
Institutional resources; Southern Europe; Durkheim; economic crisis; unions

Year2018
JournalEuropean Journal of Industrial Relations
Journal citation24 (2), pp. 129-143
PublisherSAGE Publications
ISSN1461-7129
Digital Object Identifier (DOI)doi:10.1177/0959680117708369
Publication dates
Print20 Jun 2018
Publication process dates
Deposited13 Dec 2018
Accepted14 Jun 2017
Accepted author manuscript
License
CC BY 4.0
File Access Level
Open
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https://openresearch.lsbu.ac.uk/item/86q85

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