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Rollinson, Derek J.
Languages: English
Types: Doctoral thesis
This study examines the internal dynamics of white collar trade union branches in the public sector. The effects of a number of internal and external factors on branch patterns of action are evaluated. For the purposes of the study branch action is taken to be the approach to issues of job regulation, as expressed along the five dimensions of dependence on the outside trade union, focus in issues adopted, initiation of issues, intensity of action in issue pursuit and representativeness. The setting chosen for the study is four branches drawn from the same geographical area of the National and Local Government Officers Association. Branches were selected to give a variety in industry settings while controlling for the potentially influential variables of branch size, density of trade union membership and possession of exclusive representational rights in the employing organisation. Identical methods of data collection were used for each branch. The principal findings of the study are that the framework of national agreements and industry collective bargaining structures are strongly related to the industrial relations climate in the employing organisation and the structures of representation within the branch. Where agreements and collective bargaining structures formally restrict branch job regulation roles, there is a degree of devolution of bargaining authority from branch level negotiators to autonomous shop stewards at workplace level. In these circumstances industrial relations climate is characterised by a degree of informality in relationships between management and trade union activists. In turn, industrial relations climate and representative structures together with actor attitudes, have strong effects on all dimensions of approach to issues of job regulation.
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