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Voting Behavior in Union Representation Elections: The Influence of Skill Homogeneity and Skill Group Size

Rebecca S. Demsetz
Industrial and Labor Relations Review
Vol. 47, No. 1 (Oct., 1993), pp. 99-113
Published by: Sage Publications, Inc.
DOI: 10.2307/2524235
Stable URL: http://www.jstor.org/stable/2524235
Page Count: 15
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Voting Behavior in Union Representation Elections: The Influence of Skill Homogeneity and Skill Group Size
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Abstract

The author analyzes data from survey responses of nonunion workers involved in 29 NLRB representation elections in 1972 and 1973 to test the hypotheses (1) that skill-homogeneous groups of workers are more readily organized than are still-heterogeneous groups and (2) that the workers in an election unit's largest skill groups will have the strongest pro-union tendencies. The results confirm the first hypothesis (though the results are sensitive to the inclusion of the most skill-homogeneous workplaces sampled), but only weakly support the second. The author concludes that this analysis may provide a new explanation for the decline in successful union organizing, if it is true that the workers comprising potential bargaining units have become increasingly skill-heterogeneous over time.

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