Economics Department



Union Bargaining Power: A View from Japan

Date of this Version



IZA DP No. 393. Forschungsinstitut zur Zukunft der Arbeit Institute for the Study of Labor. Discussion Series Paper.


Industrial relations researchers have long recognized the importance of bargaining power in understanding wage settlements between labor and management. As an empirical matter it has been a challenge to develop measures of union bargaining power. Using a unique data set from Japan, this study identifies how close contract settlements came to satisfying organized labor’s original demands. With those survey results over the 1960-1999 period, it is possible to develop a measure of union power and distinguish how it has fluctuated over time. These findings for Japan have important implications for empirical analysis of union bargaining power.

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