Solidarity Against All Odds: Trade Unions and the Privatization of Pensions in the Age of Dualization

TitleSolidarity Against All Odds: Trade Unions and the Privatization of Pensions in the Age of Dualization
Publication TypeJournal Article
Year of Publication2015
AuthorsNaczyk, Marek, and Seeleib-Kaiser, Martin
JournalPolitics & Society
Volume43
Issue3
Pagination361 - 384
Date Published2015///
KeywordsBelgium, capitalism, collective bargaining, comparative political economy, dualization, Germany, labor unions, organized labor, pension funds, pensions, United Kingdom, welfare state
Abstract

In an era of fiscal austerity and dualization of social protection, has organized labor become increasingly split along skill and industry lines? Against recent political science accounts of trade union involvement in social policy-making, this paper argues that, in the specific area of pensions, unions representing high-skilled workers and the core industrial sectors of the economy have been paradoxically led to increase their cooperation with unions representing the less privileged segments of labor, and this in order to improve coverage of private pensions across the board. These unions’ motivations for doing so and the strategies they have employed have nonetheless differed according to the pre-existing institutional design of domestic pension systems. The argument is supported with case studies of British, French, German and Belgian unions’ involvement in contemporary pension reform.

URLhttp://papers.ssrn.com/sol3/papers.cfm?abstract_id=2565428