Organised Decentralisation of Collective Bargaining Case studies of Germany, Netherlands and Denmark

This paper investigates different varieties of so called organised decentralisation of collective bargaining in Germany, the Netherlands and Denmark. Organised decentralisation occurs within the framework of sector agreements, which explicitly allow determination of terms and conditions at company l...

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Main Author: Ibsen, Christian Lyhne
Other Authors: Keune, Maarten
Format: eBook
Language:English
Published: Paris OECD Publishing 2018
Series:OECD Social, Employment and Migration Working Papers
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Collection: OECD Books and Papers - Collection details see MPG.ReNa
Summary:This paper investigates different varieties of so called organised decentralisation of collective bargaining in Germany, the Netherlands and Denmark. Organised decentralisation occurs within the framework of sector agreements, which explicitly allow determination of terms and conditions at company level, and often set certain (minimum) level standards as well as procedure that have to be respected. German decentralisation is based on its dual-channel system and extensive use of opening clauses, which make workplace derogation from sector-level agreements possible. Dutch decentralisation is based on the dual-channel system and on framework agreements that allow company level bargaining as long as minimum stipulations are observed. Finally, Denmark combines a single-channel system with framework agreements setting minimum levels. Germany stands out as the least organised of the three. Opening and derogation clauses mean that terms and conditions in multi-employer agreements can be undercut. Vertical control over these derogations has suffered from the dual-channel representation in which works councils have a new role. The Netherlands exhibit some, very limited, elements of disorganisation and stable bargaining coverage. Decentralisation has mainly happened through framework agreements setting minimum levels or through the organised transfer of competencies to works councils. The Danish system leaves a lot of scope for local bargaining, the minimum levels are generally observed and bargaining coverage has not suffered. Based on these findings, we draw the conclusion that organised decentralisation requires articulation that preserves a regulatory function of multi-employer agreements. Preservation of multi-employer agreements in turn requires high bargaining coverage. 
Physical Description:35 p