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Rebellion against Reason? A Study of Expressive Choice and Strikes

Christa Brunnschweiler, Colin Jennings and Ian MacKenzie

No 1205, Working Papers from University of Strathclyde Business School, Department of Economics

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 benenifit 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.

Keywords: strikes; fairness; expressive voting (search for similar items in EconPapers)
JEL-codes: D03 D72 J52 (search for similar items in EconPapers)
Pages: 25 pages
Date: 2012-06
New Economics Papers: this item is included in nep-cdm
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http://www.strath.ac.uk/media/1newwebsite/departme ... 2012/12-05-Final.pdf (application/pdf)

Related works:
Working Paper: Rebellion against Reason? A Study of Expressive Choice and Strikes (2013) Downloads
Working Paper: Rebellion against Reason? A Study of Expressive Choice and Strikes (2012) Downloads
Working Paper: Rebellion against Reason? A Study of Expressive Choice and Strikes (2012) Downloads
Working Paper: Rebellion against Reason? A Study of Expressive Choice and Strikes (2012) Downloads
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