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Workplace voice and civic engagement: what theory and data tell us about unions and their relationship to the democratic process

Bryson, Alex, Gomez, Rafael, Kretschmer, Tobias and Willman, Paul (2013) Workplace voice and civic engagement: what theory and data tell us about unions and their relationship to the democratic process. Osgoode Hall Law Journal, 50 (4). pp. 965-998. ISSN 0030-6185

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Abstract

We offer an explanation for the phenomenon of declining democratic engagement by assuming that what happens at work is the primary driver of what occurs outside of the workplace. If workers are exposed to the formalities of collective bargaining and union representation, they also perhaps increase their attachment to, and willingness to participate in, structures of democratic governance outside of the workplace as well. In order for this argument to hold, one first needs to test whether individual union members are more prone to vote and participate in civil society than non-members: Other research refers to this as the union voting premium. We find that the voice effect of unionism on democratic participation is significant and is larger for groups that are significantly under-represented when it comes to voting, namely those with fewer years of education, immigrants, and younger workers. We also discuss the legal implications of these findings.

Item Type: Article
Official URL: http://www.ohlj.ca/
Additional Information: © 2013 Osgoode Hall Law School, York University, Canada
Library of Congress subject classification: H Social Sciences > HD Industries. Land use. Labor
J Political Science > JA Political science (General)
Sets: Research centres and groups > Centre for Economic Performance (CEP)
Rights: http://www.lse.ac.uk/library/usingTheLibrary/academicSupport/OA/depositYourResearch.aspx
Date Deposited: 03 Jun 2014 15:22
URL: http://eprints.lse.ac.uk/56970/

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