Taking Stock: Collective Bargaining at the Turn of the Century
Examining data from two national surveys of matched pairs of union and management lead negotiators, the authors evaluate the current state of practice in labor relations and test several propositions related to the transformation of American industrial relations. They find that 30–40% of the parties reported that they had introduced negotiated, workplace-level innovations or engaged in strategic-level interactions—both important aspects of transformation. Also, nearly half of the parties reported experience with use of interest-based bargaining practices. At the same time, relatively few parties reported relationships that were improving, and views on the extent of change differed between labor and management. Thus, there is an identifiable path supporting the transformation process, but only a minority of bargaining relationships are moving down that path.