In this project period, we have focused on work in WP1 and WP2.
In the paper Upholding Unions – How Co-Workers’ Influence Shape Membership by Harald Dale-Olsen, Henning Finseraas, Kristine Nergaard and Elin Svarstad, which was presented at the COPE 2023 in Herning, the authors apply Norwegian administrative register data to test the assumption that co-workers affect each other when it comes to unionization, while addressing homophily bias, contextual and network confounding. We find strong support of the notion that social interactions are important for unionization, but this importance diminishes over time. These relationships are strengthened when exploiting spillover shocks to co-workers’ unionization.
In the study Dale-Olsen, H. og K. M. Østbakken (2023), «Økonomisk gevinst av fagorganisering på toppen av akademia? – En empirisk analyse av lønnsdannelsen blant professorer». Søkelys på arbeidslivet, 40, 1-21, the authors analyze how the pay setting for professors in Norway is affected by wage bargaining, with specific focus on whether unionization reduces wage inequality. The analysis is based on Norwegian population-wide linked employer-employee data for the period 2004–2018. They establish a unionization earnings premium of 3–8 percent. Compared to non-unionized professors, earnings increase over time when professors join unions, but diminish over time when professors leave unions.
Colossus comprises three work packages. WP 1 studies structural reasons why employers and workers join collective organizations and why they do or do not reach collective agreements. We conduct novel qualitative and quantitative data collections among Norwegian employers to confront this perspective with Norwegian data. This allow us to study employer preferences, attitudes, and beliefs about collective organization. We merge this survey with administrative linked employer-employee data to get a comprehensive analysis of what type of firms join employer organisations (EO) and why. Particular emphasis is technological change. We complement the study of EO with analyses of trade unions (TU). Finally, we study determinants of collective agreements. We do so using both qualitative and quantitative methods. The work package is explicitly comparative, comparing Germany, Norway, US and UK. Work package 2 studies policies and strategies to sustain collective organization. Using information about the campaigns for TU membership—who was affected and when, as well as its content—we evaluate how successful these campaigns have been in a Norwegian context. In the second part of this work package, we study the effects of government subsidies of TU and EO membership. Work package 3 studies the implementation of collective organization and agreements. In the first sub-project, we follow firms involved in conflict regarding the implementation of collective agreements handled by the National Mediator of Norway.We follow them before and after conflict, comparing them to similar workplaces and their employees on firm and worker outcomes such as productivity, worker turnover, wages and sick leaves. In the second sub-project, we study worker representatives to identify the benefits and costs of taking such a role. We contribute to the scarce empirical literature on this issue by following worker representatives over time, identifying both short and long-term effects of representation.