Please use this identifier to cite or link to this item: http://hdl.handle.net/10419/171605
Authors: 
Brunnschweiler, Christa N.
Jennings, Colin
MacKenzie, Ian A.
Year of Publication: 
2012
Series/Report no.: 
Economics Working Paper Series 12/162
Abstract: 
In this paper we challenge the conventional view that strikes are caused by asymmetric information regarding firm profitability such that union members are uninformed. Instead, we build an expressive model of strikes where the perception of unfairness provides the expressive benefit of voting for a strike. The model predicts that larger union size increases both wage offers and the incidence of strikes. Furthermore, while asymmetric information is still important in causing strikes, we find that it is the employer who is not fully informed about the level of emotionality within the union, thereby contributing to strike incidence. An empirical test using UK data provides support for the predictions. In particular, union size has a positive effect on the incidence of strikes and other industrial actions even when asymmetric information regarding profitability is controlled for.
Subjects: 
strikes
expressive voting
JEL: 
D03
D72
J52
Persistent Identifier of the first edition: 
Document Type: 
Working Paper

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