This paper reviews the empirical literature on the impact of union and worker participation in managerial decision-making on the union as an institution. It then looks at the experience over time of eleven local unions heavily involved in various forms of participation, trac ing both the trajectory of participation and union outcomes. The outcomes examined include membership levels, member participa tion, leadership development, internal politics, collective bargaining and grievance handling impacts, and enterprise unionism. Analyses of these cases suggest that participation may be declining. At the same time, participation does not seem to have profoundly altered the nature and functioning of these unions. Further, participation does not appear to "cause" enterprise unionism, but local unions that are isolated economically and politically do have trouble coping with participation. Finally, overall, these local unions often lack resources to do both participation and their traditional functions well.
All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes
- Industrial relations
- Arts and Humanities (miscellaneous)
- Sociology and Political Science