Use this URL to cite or link to this record in EThOS: http://ethos.bl.uk/OrderDetails.do?uin=uk.bl.ethos.524954
Title: Effects of unions and management practices on performance and wages
Author: Manquilef Bächler, Alejandra Adriana
Awarding Body: University of Warwick
Current Institution: University of Warwick
Date of Award: 2009
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Abstract:
Chapter 1 examined the wage premia related to union membership and coverage over 1991-2003, a period involving decline and stabilisation of union participation. Differences in union premia - across workers and over time - were studied using a rich individual-level data: the British Household Panel Survey. A quantile regression technique allowing for endogeneity of the membership decision was implemented. Raw differentials suggested the presence of large and positive union wage premia that were stronger at the bottom of the wage distribution in both private and public sectors. After controlling for other factors influencing wages, union premia asymmetries were no longer apparent in the private sector. When endogeneity was taken into account, there was no one significant premium in the private sector, indicating positive selection into union jobs. In contrast, in the public sector, workers whose jobs were covered by union contracts were found to earn more than not covered workers (ceteris paribus); this effect was stronger at the bottom among males, while for females the premium was constant across workers and substantial over the whole period, reflecting the continuing strength of public sector unions. Since the difference between union members over covered non-members was always found to be insignificant, chapter 1 concluded that there is no free-rider puzzle. Chapter 2 investigated whether the U.K. National Minimum Wage introduction on April 1st, 1999 affected unionisation rates among workers whose wages rose to comply with the law. The British Household Panel Survey is used because it provides rich individual information that affects the union choices and it permits the implementation of the Difference-in-Difference estimator. Results were robust to sub-samples, alternative comparison groups and different estimation methods. Chapter 2 found that employees from workplaces where unions had been recognised were 15 percentage points more likely to become union members when the NMW was introduced. Workers did so, presumably, to protect their jobs. There was neither law anticipation nor first NMW upgrade significant effects. Chapter 3 studied the effects of Human Resource Management Practices (HRM) on performance. It analysed the case of private firms in Great Britain by making use of the Workplace Employment Relations Survey in 2004 (WERS): a linked employer-employee data that allowed investigating what HRM did to firms as well as to their workers. As few others have done, this chapter: i) modelled the adoption of HRM as endogenous; ii) used 28 practices that together covered the main areas of personnel relations; and iii) allowed for different effects to exist between low- and high-technology firms. The results were robust to eight measures of HRM and different estimation strategies including the latent factor modelling approach – never implemented in this context. In low-technology firms, monetary incentives were found to increase both worker productivity and profits - by increasing revenue further than costs (in the ratio 4:1). By contrast, in high-technology firms, the sense of fairness at work combined with hiring procedures were found to increase worker productivity and profits - by increasing revenue further than costs (in the ration 2:1). Only in non-union workplaces, worker involvement in decision making was found to reduce performance, i.e., decentralisation damages performance if the establishment lacks the right incentives for their workers to offer valuable ideas for firm.
Supervisor: Not available Sponsor: Overseas Research Students Awards Scheme ; University of Warwick. Dept. of Economics
Qualification Name: Thesis (Ph.D.) Qualification Level: Doctoral
EThOS ID: uk.bl.ethos.524954  DOI: Not available
Keywords: HD Industries. Land use. Labor
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