Collective Bargaining and the Gender Pay Gap in the Printing Industry

TitleCollective Bargaining and the Gender Pay Gap in the Printing Industry
Publication TypeJournal Article
Year of Publication2014
AuthorsDawson, Tricia
JournalGender, Work & Organization
Pagination381 - 394
Date Published2014///
Keywordscollective bargaining, gender, gender bias, gender pay gap, power

This paper considers the effect of collective bargaining on the gender pay gap in the printing industry. This sector was subject to multi-employer bargaining for around 90 years, until 2010. The article analyses gendered collective bargaining processes through the mechanism of symbolic power, that is, the power of interpretation and definition, and utilizes Walton and McKersie's seminal work on bargaining behaviour to understand the processes that have prevented the closing of the pay gap. It finds that symbolic power operates within the sub-processes of attitudinal structuring and intra-organizational bargaining to de-legitimize women's role in equal pay bargaining, alongside distributive bargaining tactics that preclude equal pay bargaining, thereby creating the impression that women are irrelevant to bargaining processes and ensuring relative invisibility for issues of importance to equality bargaining.