Industrial Relations Reform: Looking to the Future: Essays in honour of Joe Isaac AO, 1st Edition (Hardback) book cover

Industrial Relations Reform: Looking to the Future

Essays in honour of Joe Isaac AO, 1st Edition

Edited by Keith Hancock, Russell D. Lansbury

Federation Press

240 pages

Purchasing Options:$ = USD

The Taylor & Francis Group cannot sell Federation Press products in your shipping region. For more information, please visit the Federation Press website.

FREE Standard Shipping!


Industrial relations is critically important for economic performance as well as the social cohesion of a nation. In Australia, industrial relations has been subject to numerous reforms by both Labor and Liberal-National Party Coalition governments during recent decades.

This book critically analyses recent changes in work and employment relations and their policy implications for Australia. Scholarly essays by prominent experts in the field examine the lessons that can be learned from previous attempts to reform industrial relations by governments with different political agendas and challenges which may lie ahead.

Some of the key questions addressed in this book include:

What can be learned from past attempts to reform the industrial relations system?

What have been the impacts of recent legislative reforms from the Howard government’s ‘WorkChoices’ to the Rudd/Gillard government’s ‘Fair Work Australia’ and the recent Abbott/Turnbull government’s policies on industrial relations?

How does politics influence proposals for industrial relations reform?

What reforms are required in relation to women, work and family issues?

How should collective bargaining and dispute settlement systems be reformed?

How have wages and productivity been affected by reforms of the industrial relations system?

What are the key issues facing Australia in relation to immigration and workforce skills?

The book is based on a symposium which celebrated the outstanding contributions of Professor Joe Isaac to scholarship and the practice of industrial relations in Australia and at the international level for more than seven decades.

Table of Contents




Table of Statutes

Tribute to Joe Isaac AO

Keith Hancock, Russell D Lansbury and Chris F Wright

1. Introduction to Industrial Relations Reform: Looking to the Future

Keith Hancock and Russell D Lansbury

2. Reforming Industrial Relations: Revisiting the 1980s and 1990s

Keith Hancock

3. Continuity and Change in Australian Labour Regulation: WorkChoices, Fair Work and the Role of the ‘Independent Umpire’

Andrew Stewart

4. ‘Dead, Buried, Cremated’ and Exhumed? Consensus in Industrial Relations Policy and Politics in Australia 2007-2015

Rae Cooper

5. Policy Tensions: Women, Work and Paid Parental Leave

Marian Baird

6. Reforming Collective Bargaining

Mark Bray and Johanna Macneil

7. Productivity, Wages and True Measures of Economic Gain

Sue Richardson

8. Australia’s Shifting Skills Ecosystem: Contemporary Challenges in Education, Training and Immigration

Damian Oliver and Chris F Wright

9. Towards a New Workplace Relations Framework? A View from the Productivity Commission

Peter Harris


About the Editors

Keith Hancock AO is Emeritus Professor of Economics at Flinders University of South Australia, where he served as Vice-Chancellor between 1980 and 1987. He was Senior Deputy President of the Australian Industrial Relations Commission from 1987 to 1997. He headed two major Commonwealth government reviews: on National Superannuation (1974-77) and Australian Industrial Relations Law and Systems (1983-85). He has undertaken pioneering work on Australian labour markets and his definitive Australian Wage Policy: Infancy and Adolescence, was published by the University of Adelaide in 2013. He continues his work on the history of wage setting in Australia. He holds a BA from Melbourne University and a PhD from the London School of Economics.

Russell Lansbury is Emeritus Professor and former Associate Dean (Research) in the Discipline of Work and Organisational Studies, in the University of Sydney Business School.

He is former editor of the Journal of Industrial Relations and undertakes research on international and comparative employment relations.

In his retirement as Emeritus Professor at the University of Sydney and Adjunct Professor at the Royal Melbourne Institute of Technology, Russell continues his work and travels. Work and Employment Relations - An Era of Change, written as a Tribute to Russell, covers topics relating to his wide research interests and contains the proceedings of a workshop sponsored in his honour by the Academy of the Social Sciences in Australia.

Subject Categories

BISAC Subject Codes/Headings:
LAW / Common
SOCIAL SCIENCE / Criminology