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The Effectiveness of Co-Determination Laws in Cooperative and Adversarial Employment Relations: When Does Regulation Have Bite?


Backes-Gellner, Uschi; Mohrenweiser, Jens; Pull, Kerstin (2015). The Effectiveness of Co-Determination Laws in Cooperative and Adversarial Employment Relations: When Does Regulation Have Bite? Economic and Industrial Democracy, 36(2):215-238.

Abstract

The German Codetermination Law grants workers of establishments with 200 or more employees the right to have a works councillor who is fully exempted from his or her regular job duties while still paid a regular salary. This article analyses theoretically and empirically how this de jure right to exemption translates into de facto practice, and explicitly takes into account the nature of the employment relations participation regime. It is found that the right of exemption has no effect in cooperative employment relations because exemptions are granted even in the absence of legal rights, but does make a difference in adversarial relations when exemptions are only granted above the threshold where legal rights force employers to do so, i.e. legal rights do make a decisive difference in exactly those situations where the legislators’ intent would not be realized without the right to legal enforcement.

Abstract

The German Codetermination Law grants workers of establishments with 200 or more employees the right to have a works councillor who is fully exempted from his or her regular job duties while still paid a regular salary. This article analyses theoretically and empirically how this de jure right to exemption translates into de facto practice, and explicitly takes into account the nature of the employment relations participation regime. It is found that the right of exemption has no effect in cooperative employment relations because exemptions are granted even in the absence of legal rights, but does make a difference in adversarial relations when exemptions are only granted above the threshold where legal rights force employers to do so, i.e. legal rights do make a decisive difference in exactly those situations where the legislators’ intent would not be realized without the right to legal enforcement.

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Additional indexing

Item Type:Journal Article, refereed, original work
Communities & Collections:03 Faculty of Economics > Department of Business Administration
Dewey Decimal Classification:330 Economics
Scopus Subject Areas:Social Sciences & Humanities > General Business, Management and Accounting
Social Sciences & Humanities > Strategy and Management
Social Sciences & Humanities > Organizational Behavior and Human Resource Management
Social Sciences & Humanities > Management of Technology and Innovation
Language:English
Date:2015
Deposited On:22 Aug 2019 10:53
Last Modified:16 Apr 2020 00:01
Publisher:Sage Publications
ISSN:0143-831X
OA Status:Closed
Publisher DOI:https://doi.org/10.1177/0143831X13501002
Other Identification Number:merlin-id:12572

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