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Youth-adult differences in the demand for unionisation: are American, British, and Canadian workers all that different?

Bryson, Alex and Gomez, Rafael and Gunderson, Morley and Meltz, Noah (2002) Youth-adult differences in the demand for unionisation: are American, British, and Canadian workers all that different? CEPDP, 515. Centre for Economic Performance, London School of Economics and Political Science, London, UK. ISBN 0753015447

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Identification Number: 515

Abstract

This paper examines demand for union membership amongst young workers in Britain, Canada and the United States. The paper benchmarks youth demands for collective representation against those of adult workers and finds that a large and significant representation gap exists in all three countries. Using a model of representation advanced by Farber (1982) and Riddell (1993) we find that a majority of the union density differential between young and adult workers is due to supply-side constraints rather than a lower desire for unionisation on the part of the young. This finding lends credence to two conjectures made in the paper; the first is that tastes for collective representation do not differ among workers (either by nationality or by age) and second that union representation can be fruitfully modelled as an experience good. The experience good properties of union membership explain the persistence of union density differentials amongst youth and adults both over time and across countries.

Item Type: Monograph (Discussion Paper)
Official URL: http://cep.lse.ac.uk
Additional Information: © 2002 the authors
Subjects: H Social Sciences > HD Industries. Land use. Labor
Sets: Research centres and groups > Managerial Economics and Strategy Group
Collections > Economists Online
Research centres and groups > Centre for Economic Performance (CEP)
Date Deposited: 29 Jul 2008 11:33
Last Modified: 06 Jun 2012 17:54
URI: http://eprints.lse.ac.uk/id/eprint/20095

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