Attitudes of Business Executives and Union Leaders to Industrial Relations

Twenty-Three Years Later

Robert Spillane*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

3 Citations (Scopus)


A survey of the attitudes of executives and union leaders to industrial relations issues was conducted by Walker in the 1950s. He reported significant ideological differences and found attitude patterns which can be characterised as pro-management and pro-union. Factor analysis showed several attitudinal dimensions to be involved in the items used and also some variation in the factor patterns of the groups. A follow-up survey in 1978 used many of the original items and sampled similar groups of executives and union leaders. Again significant attitudinal differences were found. Two decades later the attitude gap between the groups has decreased although wide differences re main. Attitudes to unions' striking, incentive schemes and the relative abilities of union leaders have changed, whilst strong support for the arbitration system as a peace-keeper has been confirmed.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)317-325
Number of pages9
JournalJournal of Industrial Relations
Issue number3
Publication statusPublished - 1980

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