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Labour Disputes in Social Economy Organizations: A First Look. Kunle Akingbola OISE,university of Toronto. Introduction. This study examines the scale, duration and dimension of labour disputes in social economy organizations in Ontario.

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Labour Disputes in Social Economy Organizations: A First Look

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Labour disputes in social economy organizations a first look l.jpg

Labour Disputes in Social Economy Organizations: A First Look

Kunle Akingbola

OISE,university of Toronto


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Introduction

  • This study examines the scale, duration and dimension of labour disputes in social economy organizations in Ontario.

  • The data is used to glean insight on the state of labour relations and, to some extent, HRM in the sector.


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Introduction

  • We suggest that the analysis of work stoppages in social economy organizations must examine the implications for stakeholders to highlight its contextual dimension.


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Introduction

  • We propose that due to the underlying social values of these organizations (Quarter, 1992; Quarter et al., 2003) and the type of workers they tend to attract (Brown & Yoshioka, 2003; McMullen & Schellenberg, 2003) the nature and interpretations of these stoppages could be could an indication of social movement unionism.


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Defining Social Economy Organizations

  • The term social economy was originally coined in France and was widely used in francophone areas such as Belgium and Quebec.

  • Social economy is a bridging concept

(Quarter, 2006)


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Defining Social Economy Organizations

  • Organizations in the social economy have social objectives central to their mission and their practice.

  • These organizations also have, either explicit economic objectives or generate some economic value through the services they provide and purchases that they undertake.

(Quarter, 2006)


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Defining Social Economy Organizations

  • Social economy organizations include nonprofits and cooperatives.

  • In addition to sharing similar characteristics as outlined above, their economic impact, especially for nonprofits is often not recognized.

(Quarter, 2006)


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Economic and Social Contributions

  • Social economy organizations are an important element in the foundation of many countries.

  • People rely on these organizations for:

    • economic development

    • employment,

    • social justice

    • advocacy, and

    • mutual support.


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Economic and Social Contributions

  • The 9,000+ cooperatives in Canada employ over 160,000 people

  • Non-financial cooperatives generated $26.2 billion in revenue in 2003


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Economic and Social Contributions

  • Some of the insurance cooperatives are among the largest employer in their business (Co-operative Secretariat. 2006)

  • Similarly, the 161,000 nonprofit and voluntary organizations operating in Canada generated $112 billion in revenue in 2003 (Imagine Canada, (2004).


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Theoretical Framework

  • Neoclassical economic literature examines the effect of strike in terms of productivity, profitability, capital investment, and employment growth (Budd, 1994; Hanrahan et al., 1997; Hirsch, 1997).


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Theoretical Framework

  • Structural and institutional perspective posits that some industries and occupations are more prone to strike due to inherent social characteristics of the work that enables collective consciousness and community integration (Kerr and Siegel, 1954).


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Theoretical Framework

  • Political and organizational explanation for strike has focused on the importance of the role of political left, bargaining structure, inadequate authority among negotiators and internal union politics (Darlington, 2004; Godard, 1992).

  • Agitator theory contends that strike is the result of the action and influence of few individuals (Darlington, 2004;Hyman, 1989).


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The Study

  • Quantitative and qualitative

  • Data on work stoppages that occurred between 1994 and 2005 from the Ontario Ministry of Labour.

  • Media databases for reports on work stoppages in the sector over the period.


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Quantitative Results: Stoppages by Year


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Stoppages by Sector


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Stoppages by Union


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Preliminary Findings

  • Social economy organizations in Ontario lost 1,052,750.00* persons days to 205 work stoppages resulting from labour disputes.

  • As expected, size was a factor in social economy organizations’ labour disputes over the period.

* number excludes work stoppages involving more than one organization.


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Preliminary Findings

  • There was a relationship between economic region and strike.

  • The health sector experienced more labour disputes than other sectors, but other service areas were unrelated to days lost to labour disputes.

* number excludes work stoppages involving more than one organization.


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