Decemberkompromiss eller Januariförlovning? : - en komparativ studie av svensk och finsk avtals- och arbetsmarknadsstruktur, reglering kring kollektivavtal samt reglering kring stridsåtgärder och sympatiåtgärder.
Declining union memberships are a fact in both Sweden and Finland. At the same time, the autonomous labour market parties and the high membership rates are the most significant factors for the two countries compared to Europe and the rest of the world. These two factors have in turn been developed and strengthened since the beginning of the twentieth century. By autonomous labour market parties I refer to the fact that the labour market parties themselves through collective bargaining are agreeing on the labour market conditions, without interference from the government.
This paper is therefore taking it's stance in the question of what happens with the autonomous labour market parties when the membership rates are in decline.
With this in mind, this paper describes the judicial development, the collective agreement and labour market structures, the legal consequences of collective agreements and the opportunities of industrial and sympathy action in both Sweden and Finland. The two countries' systems of labour law have caught some negative attention, hence two of the most discussed cases of recent years are given some attention as well.
The collective judicial conditions are very similar in both Sweden and Finland regarding the labour market main actors' collaboration, the collective agreement structures and legal consequences and the opportunities of industrial and sympathy action. The Finnish regulations regarding industrial action are somewhat more unconstrained compared to the Swedish ones. The Swedish opportunities of sympathy action are on the other hand more intricate and contain more exceptions. The Finnish union density is almost as high as in Sweden, although the Finnish employees are more willing to use industrial action. The labour market structures are relatively similar between the countries and so are the effects of the legislation and traditions surrounding them. The differences are found in the larger gender pay gaps present in Finland. While the differences are also present in Sweden, they are smaller. The similarities are found in the effects of the labour market structures and the labour market main actors' collaboration. Both are contributing to strengthening the present conditions.
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