A complex set of forces facing trade union organizations has meant that union restructuring vis-à-vis merger activity has been a prominent feature of many Western labour movements in the 1980s and 1990s. This paper is located in these structural developments, and its main contribution lies in the insights provided by an in-depth examination of recent union merger activity in commercial television in the UK and Australia. In contrast to the work of Undy et al. (1981), the results suggest that union mergers are influenced by more than changes in membership patterns, and that the delineation of merger categories may be far more complex than what has previously been identified by their model. It is argued, too, that the nature of the forces and the processes that led to the broadcasting union mergers in the UK and Australia were significantly influenced by the different institutional contexts of both countries. Finally, and related to this, it would appear that union merger outcomes (at least in the short term) are linked to the preceding processes by which merger is brought about. One policy implication of this is that anything other than a case-by-case evaluation of union mergers may be misleading.
|Number of pages||28|
|Journal||British Journal of Industrial Relations|
|Publication status||Published - Jun 1997|