Trade Unions and European Integration : A Question of Optimism and Pessimism? book cover
1st Edition

Trade Unions and European Integration
A Question of Optimism and Pessimism?

ISBN 9780367728168
Published December 18, 2020 by Routledge
288 Pages

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Book Description

Trade Unions and European Integration brings together pessimists and optimists on trade unionism under the contemporary pressures of European integration. The Great Recession has brought new attention to structural problems of the European integration process, specifically monetary integration; holding the potential of disabling any trans-national co-ordination. Other authors argue that the current crisis also poses the chance for mobilization and new impulses for European trade unionism. This is discussed in the volume alongside a variety of topics including bargaining coordination, co-determination, European governance regimes, and European wide mobilization.

While the importance of the question of how trade unionism and wage policy can, will, and should develop under the conditions of European integration seems widely shared, the polarization of the debate itself deserves our attention to learn about the opposing arguments and points of view; and to enhance academic discussion as well as consultancy to policy makers. This volume addresses this debate by bringing together the most distinguished voices and searching for common ground as well as new perspectives on European trade unionism and collective bargaining. The chapters of the volume, organised topically, are each accompanied by a comment from a distinguished scholar, highlighting the divisions of the debate. With this innovative approach, this book advances the dialogue between what have become openly opposed camps of optimists and pessimists on the future of European integration, trade unionism and its future chances.

Trade Unions and European Integration will appeal to students and researchers interested in fields such as European Studies, Industrial Relations, Political Economics, Social Movements and Sociology of Work.

Table of Contents

1 Introduction: Trade Unions under the Pressure of European Integration. A Question of Optimism and Pessimism?

Martin Seeliger and Johannes Kiess

2 Trade unions in the European crisis: a social movement perspective

Donatella della Porta

3 Comment on della Porta

Wolfgang Streeck

4 Conceptualising the Development of European Industrial Relations from a neo-Gramscian Perspective

Andreas Bieler and Hans-Jürgen Bieling

5 Self-intimidation. Comment on Bieler/Bieling

Georg Vobruba

6 The Europeanisation of Wage Bargaining Coordination

Susanne Pernicka and Vera Glassner

7 The coordination paradox: A comparative political economy perspective on transnational wage coordination

Martin Höpner

8 Ambiguities of Social Europe: Political Agenda Setting among Trade Unionists from Central and Eastern Europe and Western Europe

Martin Seeliger

9 Comment on Seeliger

Guglielmo Meardi

10 EWC – ineffective bureaucratic body or institutionalising labour regulation at European company level?

Ludger Pries

11 The European Works Council – Not an effective Means against Site-Competition and Multiscalar Social Fragmentation

Stefanie Hürtgen

12 The long and winding road to pan-European co-determination rights

Sara Lafuente Hernández

13 Europe is not the answer. Some remarks on the future of worker co-determination in Europe

Benjamin Werner

14 European economic governance, autonomy of collective bargaining and democratic capitalism

Daniel Seikel

15 Going beyond institutional restrictions: conflict as a challenge

Johannes Kiess

16 Contention in Times of Crisis: British and German Social Actors and the Quest of Framing Capitalism

Johannes Kiess

17 Comment on "Contention in Times of Crisis"

Oliver Nachtwey

18 A constant tug of war: Neoliberalism and social unrest in (post)-crisis Europe

Madelaine Moore and Anne Engelhardt

19 Comment on "A constant tug of war"

Roland Erne


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Johannes M. Kiess is a post-doctoral researcher at Siegen University, Germany

Martin Seeliger is an assistant professor at the Europa-Universität Flensburg, Germany