What Do Unions Do to Productivity: A Meta-analysis

University of Vic, Vic, Catalonia, Spain
Industrial Relations A Journal of Economy and Society (Impact Factor: 1.48). 09/2003; 42(4):650 - 691. DOI: 10.1111/1468-232X.00310


The impact of unions on productivity is explored using meta-analysis and meta-regression analysis. It is shown that most of the variation in published results is due to specification differences between studies. After controlling for differences between studies, a negative association between unions and productivity is established for the United Kingdom, whereas a positive association is established for the United States in general and for U.S. manufacturing.

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Available from: Patrice Laroche, May 29, 2014
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    • "Reflecting these countervailing tendencies, the direct relationship between unions and measures of organizational performance (e.g. productivity and profitability ) has been inconsistent, and recent meta-analyses show that the results are difficult to generalize across different industries, countries, years and workplace labour relations practices (Doucouliagos and Laroche 2003, 2009; Hirsch 2004). "
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    • "` A titre illustratif , le tableau 5 présente deux modèles de méta - régression ex - plicative pour illustrer cette approche qui consistè a incorporer des tests FAT ou MST dans des modèles de régression multiple . Il s ' agit ici de deux méta - régressions , réaliséesà partir des données de Doucouliagos et Laroche ( 2003 ) , dont l ' objectif est d ' examiner l ' influence de la nature des données utilisées 15 sur les résultats desétudes consacrées au lien syndicat / productivité . Les résultats du FAT - MRA présentés dans le tableau 5 indiquent que lesétudes menées sur des données américaines font ressortir plus souvent un lien positif entre la présence syndicale et la productivité du travail ( t = 2 , 08 , p < 0 , 05 ) . "
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    • "As an alternative measure that captures the value added by employees, we use EBITDA per Employee, which is the ratio of operating income before depreciation and amortization (data item 13) to the number of 18 Baldwin (1983) argues that firms keep inefficient plants to discourage unions from bargaining for higher wages. Doucouliagos and Laroche (2003) find a positive relation between unionization and productivity for U.S. firms. Chen, Kacperczyk, and Ortiz-Molina (2009a,b) argue that unions reduce the agency costs of financing. "
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