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CentrePiece article
In brief: Circling the Wagons: Unions' Part in their Own Decline
P Willman
June 2005
Paper No' CEPCP179:
Full Paper (pdf)

CentrePiece 10 (2) Summer 2005

The conventional explanation of union decline in Britain tends to stress the impact of outside forces. Manufacturing employment collapsed and there was massive membership loss. Unemployment rose. Hostile legislation impaired unions’ ability to represent and recruit. In short, macroeconomic and political factors restricted unions' ability to sustain the membership advances of the 1970s across subsequent decades.

This paper has been published as:
Paul Willman 'Circling the Wagons: Endogeneity in Union Decline' in Susan Fernie and David Metcalf (eds.), Trade Unions: Resurgence or Demise?, Routledge, 2005