Externality in industrial relations in small and medium-sized manufacturing enterprises in Renfrewshire.
This study attempts to examine change to the industrial relations system of Renfrewshire over
the last few decades.
By focusing on the area's traditional historical reliance on manufacturing industry as a vital
contributor for employment in Renfrewshire, the consequences of change and its effect on the
area's local industrial relations system provide the main emphasis for our research.
In particular, the study adopts the concept of'externality' as a theme, and as an analytical tool
for analysis, in order to comment on change experienced by Renfrewshire's distinct industrial
Investigation took the form of a survey of workplace industrial relations in manufacturing
small and medium sized establishments in the districts of Renfrew and Inverclyde.
The main chapters of this study consider the main institutions of industrial relations support
for the Renfrewshire area, such as Employers' Organisations, Trade Unions or ACAS; and
the changes which have been seen to occur with regard to these bodies.
We contend that an industrial relations parallel to the concept of 'branch factory syndrome'
has been witnessed by these institutional bodies in relation to Renfrewshire.
The main conclusion of this study is that the system has adapted, in its own way, based on its
historical characteristics, especially in respect of workplace organisation.
The study identifies four main factors which have a relevance on the changing face of the
industrial relations system in Renfrewshire:
1. industrial re-structuring (at macro level)
3. national bargaining decline
4. organisation-level rationalisation
Finally, some recommendations for further research are made