Is it possible to organize International solidarity at a firm level? The role of the International Framework Agreements (Ifa)

Author/s Michael Fichter, Markus Helfen, Katharina Schiederig
Publishing Year 2011 Issue 2011/123 Language Italian
Pages 18 P. 97-114 File size 265 KB
DOI 10.3280/SL2011-123006
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Organizing transnational solidarity is the Achilles heel of trade unionism, particular in today’s world of global production and competition. Firstly, this paper will show how asymmetrical power relationship plays out in regard to labor relations in Transnational Corporations (Tnc) and their global production networks, and how the strategy of International Framework Agreements (Ifas) - within the limits of a company-oriented approach - contributes to improving labor’s bargaining position. Trade unions can use Ifas to create space for organizing, for gaining recognition and for initiating collective bargaining. In a second step the focus will be on Global Union Federations and their approaches to making Ifas a tool for forging transnational solidarity. In this respect we emphasize the importance of Ifas as a factor in providing Gufs with both recognition as a bargaining agent - among its affiliates and "across the table" in management as well - and with a bargaining agenda. The paper will conclude with an assessment of what has been achieved in the way of transnational solidarity with the Ifa strategy, and what challenges may lay ahead.

Keywords: Global governance, labour standards, collective bargaining, social dialogue, global union policy, corporate social responisibility

Michael Fichter, Markus Helfen, Katharina Schiederig, Si può organizzare la solidarietà internazionale a livello aziendale? La prospettiva degli International Framework Agreements (Ifa) in "SOCIOLOGIA DEL LAVORO " 123/2011, pp 97-114, DOI: 10.3280/SL2011-123006