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Round 5: Belgium, Bulgaria, Cyprus, Czech Republic, Denmark, Estonia, Finland, France, Germany, Greece, Hungary, Ireland, Lithuania, Netherlands, Norway, Poland, Portugal, Slovakia, Slovenia, Spain, Sweden, Switzerland, United Kingdom

English title New social risk groups, industrial relations regimes and union membership
Language English
Type Journal article
Year 2017


The literature on new social risk (NSR) groups, such as single parents and temporary workers, has argued that they are less likely to join trade unions than other employees. It has been suggested that this is due to the unions’ incapacity or unwillingness to promote policies that mediate NSRs. We argue that there are differences in unionization between different NSR groups, and that country-level institutional structures, operationalized here as industrial relations (IR) regimes, have effects on how likely NSR groups are to unionize. Our multilevel logistic models using European Social Survey (ESS) data produce three main results: (1) family policy-related NSR groups (single parents, female employees with children and female caregivers) are more – not less – unionized than the average worker; (2) precarious workers (low-skilled service employees, temporary employees and part-timers) are, indeed, less unionized than average but (3) this result concerns mostly the liberal and transitional IR regimes.

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Journal:Journal of European Social Policy
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