'Compulsory arbitration and industrial conflict in Australia'.
The purp04e of this research was to evaluate compulsory
arbitration in Australia and elsewhere against a criterion of
industrial conflict; and to contribute to knowledge of
industrial conflict and relations in industry.
Part I outlines the origins, history and development
of the Australian system. Analysis brought out:-
1. Impressive growth ot the system.
2. Regional differences in growth.
3. Preoccupation with economic and material disputes and only
the legal and logical aspects of these.
4. Extreme complexity, formality, "legalism", delay and expense.
5. That prevailing tactics of parties and specialists were
determining the work and influence of the ,yst_.
6. The inefficacy of laws, penalties, sanctions and compulsion
either to prevent or settle strikes.
7. That conciliation had declined to become negligible.
8. That compulsion was enabling the parties to avoid
responsibility to their constituents.
Part II compares and analyses industrial conflict in
various countries. Australia was observed to have a greater
strike problem than most comparable countries. The pattern of
industrial conflict in Australia and New Zealand appeared
distinctive, strikes being comparitively numerous and Short.
Further analysis of industrial conflict in Australia covered
regional comparisons, economic influences, industrial distribution,
duration, causes and results of strikes.
Part III applies the foregoing investigations to the
purposes of the research. The Australian system, judged by
international and regional comparisons was found wanting; ,and
compulsory arbitration seemed doubtfully appropriate for the
problems of industrial conflict under any circumstances.
Industrial conflict itself was considered, first to achieve
comprehensive perspective and establish the generalisei
"unrest" which underlies conflict; and secondly to consider
its constituents namely trade unions and informal groups.
A frame ot reference orientated on psychological and
sociological viewpoints was established, and applied to
comprehend some observations ot industrial conflict.
Finally the implications tor practice were coniidered,
and suggestions tor reform of the Australian compulsory
arbitration system expressed.