Free Riding in Australia

Haynes, Peter and Holland, Peter and Pyman, Amanda and Teicher, Julian (2008) Free Riding in Australia. Economic and Industrial Democracy, 29 (1). pp. 7-34. ISSN 0143-831X . (The full text of this publication is not currently available from this repository. You may be able to access a copy if URLs are provided)

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Free-riding has long been a contentious issue in Australian industrial relations. This article gauges the nature and location of free-riding in Australian workplaces, drawing on the 2004 Australian Worker Representation and Participation Survey. Of the 39.2 percent of employees who could join a union in their workplace and who do not, 51.7 percent may be characterized as deliberately free-riding. A similar proportion of employees may be described as 'passive beneficiaries', for whom the costs of membership are greater than the benefits, or for whom the net benefit is not perceived to be positive. Although free-riding is found to reduce as age and tenure increase, and to increase with higher income, supervisory responsibilities and full-time employment status, when free-riding is regressed against a range of personal and workplace characteristics only tenure and supervisory responsibilities retain significance. In general, instrumental motivations prevail over the ideological, personal, organizational and worker characteristics included in this analysis. The implications of these findings for union renewal in the current context are discussed.

Item Type: Article
Uncontrolled keywords: bargaining agency fees; free-riding; trade union membership; union joining
Subjects: H Social Sciences > HD Industries. Land use. Labor > HD28 Management. Industrial Management
Divisions: Faculties > Social Sciences > Kent Business School > Industrial Relations/HRM
Depositing User: Amanda Pyman
Date Deposited: 13 Feb 2009 10:12
Last Modified: 23 Jun 2014 14:56
Resource URI: (The current URI for this page, for reference purposes)
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