industrial conflict

industrial conflict

CONFLICTs, both overt and covert, which arise from the employment relationship and which are manifest in many different forms, from STRIKES and lockouts to time-wasting. The study of industrial conflict has involved:
  1. the classification of its different forms, e.g. visible and organized, such as strikes, or more hidden and informal, such as ‘working to rule’;
  2. study of the sources and consequences of these;
  3. consideration of the social processes by which activities actually become defined or labelled as ‘conflict’ (including media presentations of these – e.g. see GLASGOW MEDIA GROUP).

Sociology is one of several disciplines concerned with the sources, forms and consequences of both-conflict and cooperation in work organizations. As a discipline, it has in particular offered a perspective which locates the study of industrial conflict within a broad understanding of the nature of industrial societies. In this respect, the attempts of MARX, WEBER and DURKHEIM have been particularly influential and still inform discussion of industrial conflict. For example, by focusing on the way in which both formally FREE WAGE LABOUR and the espoused democratic values of capitalist societies are contradicted by the usually hierarchical nature of relations at work, sociologists have questioned those explanations of industrial conflict which either tend to offer crude psychological explanations or to regard it as simply ‘irrational’. In all, four schools of thought can be identified in the study of industrial conflict (see also INDUSTRIAL RELATIONS):

  1. ‘unitarians’, who view conflict largely as an irrational aberration;
  2. ‘pluralists’, who regard organizations as inherently conflictual, but the conflicting interests within these as amenable to, and benefitting from, mutual accommodation;
  3. ‘radical pluralists’, who explain the persistence of conflicts as arising from fundamental inequalities of power and advantage;
  4. Marxists, who ground their analysis in assumptions deriving from Marxian conceptions of EXPLOITATION and conflict. see also CONFLICT THEORY.
References in periodicals archive ?
"Inflation, power cuts, IRA bombs and industrial conflict all dominated the news headlines.
2706983 PARIS - France's communist CGT-Trade Union warns extending the worker strike and industrial conflict beyond June.
During the Miner's Strike, an industrial conflict over the government of the day's scheming to destroy an otherwise competitive industry became a political battleground where the state deployed their full armoury to secure victory.
He added: "Dublin Bus drivers had committed to completing their shifts, even if this meant returning buses to their garages after the official start of strike action at 12.01am on Thursday." The union warned the "intransigence" of Dublin Bus management and the Transport Department could lead to "a long and damaging period of industrial conflict".
"There are considerable cuts in people's terms and conditions at this time and while people may reluctantly accept these, employers are creating a future where this whole cutbacks agenda will be a recipe for industrial conflict in the foreseeable future.
When Professor Kumar Bhattacharyya waded into the current Jaguar Land Rover pay row, his words re-opened, at least for some of us, a veritable Pandora's Box of industrial conflict here in the West Midlands.
"Since the first half of 2010, 'Industrial conflict' has grown fiercer, and migrant workers' spontaneous industrial actions have begun to gain wider public attention, which deeply worries employers and the government." According to government figures, the annual number of labor disputes and "mass incidents" both exceed 100,000.
However, and even before the industrial conflict spilled over into the systematic destruction of Tonypandy shops on the night of November 8, Churchill had already agreed to send on the troops assembled (200 cavalry and two infantry regiments) as far as Cardiff.
The former Labour leader is the latest protagonist from the industrial conflict to open up to ex-Plaid Cymru MP Adam Price in his S4C series about the dispute.
(2009a), Labor Institutions and Labor Reforms in Contemporary India, Volume I: Trade Unions and Industrial Conflict, Icfai Press, Hyderabad.
They come as communities across the country gear up to commemorate the 30th anniversary of the start of the most bitter industrial conflict in living memory.
Whereas most explanations of industrial conflict in the industry have focused on the distinctive character of workers and unions, O'Leary and Sheldon examine employer strategies, ownership patterns and relations between large and smaller employers, depicting successive waves of employer strategic choice which end, as in the processes outlined by Fairbrother et al, in a period of labour flexibility, cost minimisation and individualised employment relationships, and efforts to marginalise unions and tighten workforce discipline.

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