Why Is there Resistance to Works Councils In Germany? An Economic Perspective
Economic and Industrial Democracy,
Recent empirical research generally finds evidence of positive economic effects for works councils, for example with regard to productivity and – with some limitations – to profits. This makes it necessary to explain why employers’ associations have reservations about works councils. On the basis of an in-depth literature analysis, this article shows that beyond the generally positive findings, there are important heterogeneities in the impact of works councils. The authors argue that those groups of employers that tend to benefit little from employee participation in terms of productivity and profits may well be important enough to shape the agenda of their employers’ organization and have even gained in importance within their organizations in recent years. The authors also discuss the role of deviations from profit-maximizing behavior like risk aversion, short-term profit-maximization and other non-pecuniary motives, as possible reasons for employer resistance.
Mission, Motivation, and the Active Decision to Work for a Social Cause
IWH Discussion Papers,
The mission of a job does not only affect the type of worker attracted to an organisation, but may also provide incentives to an existing workforce. We conducted a natural field experiment with 267 short-time workers and randomly allocated them to either a prosocial or a commercial job. Our data suggest that the mission of a job itself has a performance enhancing motivational impact on particular individuals only, i.e., workers with a prosocial attitude. However, the mission is very important if it has been actively selected. Those workers who have chosen to contribute to a social cause outperform the ones randomly assigned to the same job by about 15 percent. This effect seems to be a universal phenomenon which is not driven by information about the alternative job, the choice itself or a particular subgroup.
11.02.2019 • 3/2019
No-deal Brexit would hit the German labour market particularly hard
The United Kingdom leaving the European Union without a deal would have consequences for international trade and labour markets in many countries, including outside Europe. Calculations by the Halle Institute for Economic Research (IWH) indicate: More than 600,000 jobs may be affected worldwide, but nowhere as many as in Germany.
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Student assistant (f/m/d) for 20 hours a month (Department of Macroeconomics)
Stellenaussschreibung Student assistant (f/m/d) for 20 hours a month...
PhD Student (Doctoral Researcher, 50%) (f/m/x) [2019-06]
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The maths behind gut decisions First carefully weigh up the costs and benefits and then make a rational...
IWH Doctoral Programme in Economics
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31.07.2018 • 16/2018
Fairness pays off
When companies arbitrarily cut their wages, the motivation and productivity of the employees decrease – this is clear. Less obvious, however: employees also become less productive even if it is their colleagues who are treated unfairly and not them. This was confirmed by a research group led by Sabrina Jeworrek at the Halle Institute for Economic Research (IWH) – Member of the Leibniz Association.
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25.05.2018 • 12/2018
The resistance of employers against works councils
Germany votes. However, this time it’s not about the politicians – instead it’s about the works councils. It’s certainly worthwhile: Many studies have shown that works councils all in all have a positive impact on productivity, wages and profits. Despite this, employers are sometimes very resistant to the idea of staff involvement in company decision-making. A common argument is that such participation limits managerial freedom and that employers are willing to sacrifice the benefits of staff participation in return for greater room for manoeuvre. Steffen Müller from the Halle Institute for Economic Research Halle (IWH) – Member of the Leibniz Association now provides an alternative economic justification for employer resistance: Employer associations are dominated by small and medium-sized enterprises, and in these works councils – in contrast to large firms – often produce no positive economic benefits.
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Social Mobility Equal opportunities for everyone Dossier ...