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Determinants of the Outcomes of Union Certification Elections

William N. Cooke
ILR Review
Vol. 36, No. 3 (Apr., 1983), pp. 402-414
Published by: Sage Publications, Inc.
DOI: 10.2307/2523019
Stable URL: http://www.jstor.org/stable/2523019
Page Count: 13
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Since scans are not currently available to screen readers, please contact JSTOR User Support for access. We'll provide a PDF copy for your screen reader.
Determinants of the Outcomes of Union Certification Elections
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Abstract

This study analyzes determinants of union election outcomes at the level of the work unit. Within a theoretical framework of utility maximization, voting behavior is modeled as a function of the social psychology of groups, the economic and sociopolitical environment, NLRB procedures, and the extent of union organization of the industry. Utilizing NLRB certification-election records for 1979, the author finds a negative relationship between unit size and union victories in units of fewer than 65 workers, but no relationship in larger units. Also negatively related to union victories are delays between petition and election dates, elections held in southern states having right-to-work laws, and elections involving the Teamsters. In contrast, workers are more likely to vote for representation as unemployment levels and the proportion of consent elections rise and as the rate of unionization in their industry rises to 35 percent.

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