Strikes and the Crisis: Industrial Conflict and Unemployment in the Western Nations

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Abstract

This article examines the fate of industrial conflict during the current economic crisis, using data on strikes and unemployment in 18 OECD nations from 1960-1982. Theoretically-based hypotheses are sought both in the notion of a 'disciplinary' political business cycle, and in the longstanding body of economic research on the relationship between strike fluctuations and labor market conditions. The empirical findings indicate that the impact of unemployment on industrial conflict varies markedly across countries and subperiods. Overall, strike activity has been dampened by mass unemployment, yet it frequently remains at a higher level than in the full-employment years of the 1960s.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)417-460
Number of pages44
JournalEconomic and Industrial Democracy
Volume4
Issue number4
DOIs
StatePublished - Nov 1983
Externally publishedYes

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