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dc.contributor.authorAddison, John T.en_US
dc.contributor.authorSchnabel, Clausen_US
dc.contributor.authorWagner, Joachimen_US
dc.description.abstractThis paper traces the profound decline in German unionism over the course of the last three decades. Today just one in five workers is a union member, and it is now moot whether this degree of penetration is consistent with a corporatist model built on encompassing unions. The decline in union membership and density is attributable to external forces that have confronted unions in many countries (such as globalization and compositional changes in the workforce) and to some specifically German considerations (such as the transition process in post-communist Eastern Germany) and sustained intervals of classic insider behavior on the part of German unions. The 'correctives' have included mergers between unions, decentralization, and wages that are more responsive to unemployment. At issue is the success of these innovations. For instance, the trend toward decentralization in collective bargaining hinges in part on the health of that other pillar of the dual system of industrial relations, the works council. But works council coverage has also declined, leading some observers to equate decentralization with deregulation. While this conclusion is likely too radical, German unions are at the cross roads. It is argued here that if they fail to define what they stand for, are unable to increase their presence at the workplace, and continue to lack convincing strategies to deal with contemporary economic and political trends working against them, then their decline may become a rout.en_US
dc.publisher|aInstitute for the Study of Labor (IZA) |cBonnen_US
dc.relation.ispartofseries|aIZA Discussion Papers |x2000en_US
dc.subject.keywordunion membershipen_US
dc.subject.keywordunion densityen_US
dc.subject.keywordunion mergersen_US
dc.subject.keywordcollective bargainingen_US
dc.subject.keywordworks councilsen_US
dc.subject.keywordcorporatist modelen_US
dc.subject.stwGewerkschaftlicher Organisationsgraden_US
dc.titleThe (parlous) state of German unionsen_US
dc.type|aWorking Paperen_US

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