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    The international labour movement: a new relationship?

    Gumbrell-McCormick, Rebecca (2011) The international labour movement: a new relationship? In: SASE, 2011, Madrid, Spain. (Unpublished)

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    International trade unionism is based on structures that for the most part were formed over a century ago, yet the trade union movement has continued to grow and develop new forms of organization and action throughout the last century, creating tensions and sometimes breaking the articulation between formal structures and trade union action. The major change to the formal structures occurred in 2006 with the foundation of the International Trade Union Confederation (ITUC), which brought together the International Confederation of Free Trade Unions (ICFTU) and the christian-inspired World Confederation of Labour (WCL) along with a number of non-aligned national centres. The creation of the ITUC also marked the beginning of a new era in relationships between structures, primarily between the ITUC itself and the Global Union Federations (GUFs), which have retained their formal autonomy within a new mechanism for collaboration with each other and with the ITUC through the Council of Global Unions. It is not yet clear to what extent these new structures and formal relationships take account of the development of more informal networks and coalitions between unions in different countries and add anything substantively new to the dynamics of trade union action and organization at the international level. This paper will describe the recent evolution within the international trade union movement, culminating in the foundation of the ITUC and the Global Union Council, analyse the strategic direction of the new organization and examine the relationship between the new formal structures and the living dynamics of trade union action.


    Item Type: Conference or Workshop Item (Paper)
    School: Birkbeck Faculties and Schools > Faculty of Business and Law > Birkbeck Business School
    Depositing User: Sarah Hall
    Date Deposited: 18 Sep 2014 09:36
    Last Modified: 02 Aug 2023 17:12


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