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Cornell University Press
Mutual Aid and Union Renewal: Cycles of Logics of Action / Edition 1

Mutual Aid and Union Renewal: Cycles of Logics of Action / Edition 1


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The ongoing decline in union membership is generally attributed to an increasingly hostile economic, legal, and managerial environment. Samuel B. Bacharach, Peter A. Bamberger, and William J. Sonnenstuhl argue that the decline may have more to do with a crisis of union legitimacy and member commitment. They further suggest that both problems could be addressed if the unions return to their nineteenth-century, mutual aid-based roots.

The authors contend that the labor movement is characterized by two models of union-member relations: the mutual aid logic and the servicing logic. The first predominated in the early days and encouraged a sense of community among members who worked to support one another. In the twentieth century, it was largely replaced by the servicing model, which asks little of members, who remain loyal only if their leaders deliver increasing wages and benefits.

Regaining legitimacy and strengthening member commitment can only happen, the authors claim, if mutual aid logic is allowed to return. They examine three unions in the transportation industry to judge the effectiveness of new programs created after the old model.

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9780801487347
Publisher: Cornell University Press
Publication date: 05/11/2001
Edition description: New Edition
Pages: 224
Product dimensions: 6.00(w) x 9.00(h) x 0.49(d)
Age Range: 18 Years

About the Author

Samuel B. Bacharach, the McKelvey-Grant Professor at Cornell University, is the cofounder of the New York City–based Bacharach Leadership Group. He is the author of more than twenty books and numerous academic articles. With his colleagues at BLG, Bacharach develops and delivers training programs that enhance the core skills of pragmatic leadership, focusing on leadership as execution. Among his previous books are Get Them on Your Side and Keep Them on Your Side. He is a frequent speaker on the topic of leadership, and he is a regular columnist for Inc.

Peter A. Bamberger is Associate Professor of Industrial Engineering and Management at Technion: Israel Institute of Technology, Haifa and coauthor of Member Assistance Programs in the Workplace, also from Cornell.

William J. Sonnenstuhl is Associate Professor of Organizational Behavior at the New York State School of Industrial and Labor Relations and the Department of Extension, Cornell University, Associate Director of the Smithers Institute for Alcohol-Related Workplace Studies, author of Working Sober, and coauthor of Member Assistance Programs in the Workplace, also from Cornell.

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