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Human Resource Management Journal

  • 1.  Human Resource Management Journal

    Posted 01-23-2019 10:56

    [with apologies for cross-posting]


    Dear colleagues,


    Please see below details of the latest issue of Human Resource Management Journal (a special issue on Employer Organisations) which is available to access free. Note also two calls for papers for forthcoming special issues (on HRM and refugee workforce integration, and context in international HRM).


    HRMJ is now also on social media – join us on twitter (@HRMJournal) or LinkedIn (https://www.linkedin.com/in/hrmj/) for updates on content, and information for readers, authors and reviewers.


    Human Resource Management Journal

    2017 Impact Factor: 2.343; Ranking: 4/27 in Industrial Relations & Labor; 83/210 in Management
    5 Year Impact Factor:


    Call for Papers


    Special Issues - Call for Papers


    The Role of HRM in Refugee Workforce Integration

    Guest Editors: Luciara Nardon, Betina Skudlarek, Soo Min Toh

    Submission Period: April 1st - April 30th 2019

    To read the full call for papers, please see here.


    Positioning Context Front and Center in International Human Resource Management Research

    Guest Editors: Elaine Farndale, Jaime Bonache, Anthony McDonnell, Bora Kwon

    Submission Period: 1st August - 31st August 2019

    To read the full call for papers, please see here.


    Latest Issue, Volume 29, Issue 1

    Full Issue Table of Contents available below:
    Volume 29, January 2019, Issue 1, Pages i-iv
    https://onlinelibrary.wiley.com/doi/10.1111/1748-8583.12228 (no abstract available for this issue)


    For a list of the Issue's articles, accompanying abstracts and article information, see below:

    Original Articles

    Employer organisations transformed
    Philippe Demougin  Leon Gooberman  Marco Hauptmeier  Edmund Heery
    Abstract: Employer organisations and the literature examining them have transformed since their inception in the 19th century. We systematically review this literature and the evolving role of employer organisations by focusing on the most cited publications of this body of academic work. This article provides a synopsis of our current understanding of employer organisations, identifies gaps in our knowledge, and develops the following argument. Employer organisations adapted to changing socio‐economic contexts by evolving within and across three roles-as industrial relations actor, political actor, and service provider. Historically, employer organisations were predominantly understood as an industrial relations actor with collective bargaining as their defining activity. However, employer organisations also influenced the political process through lobbying and participating in corporatist arrangements, although more recently their provision of member services has grown in scope and importance.


    When territory matters: Employer associations and changing collective goods strategies

    Peter Sheldon Edoardo Della Torre Raoul Nacamulli
    Abstract: Recent research shows employer associations strategically responding to external challenges, from collective bargaining decentralisation, by altering their offerings of "selective" goods (to directly address threats to membership levels) and of "elective" goods (to revenues). Implicit is that traditional "collective goods" are irrelevant for achieving sustainability. That literature also suggests that territorial associations are more vulnerable than sectoral ones. In this qualitative, longitudinal comparative case study, we explore why and how two territorial associations, the largest each in Italy and Australia, have pursued sustainability by also innovatively enlarging their collective goods activities. This has involved shifting from bargaining leadership to promoting economic dynamism within their territories. Using metaorganisation theory and the resource‐based view, we explain how these associations realised their strategic advantages. Our evidence suggests that innovatively developing new collective goods may be another important way associations can improve their competitive positions.


    Adapting to survive: The case of Danish employers' organisations

    Christian Lyhne Ibsen Steen E. Navrbjerg
    Abstract: Scholars often characterise Danish employers' organisations (EOs) as relatively stable, with a continuing role in the coordination of industrial relations and corporatist policymaking. This article shows that, beneath surface stability, Danish EOs have significantly adapted structurally and functionally to survive environmental pressures. However, rather than converging onto a liberal market trajectory, we find that Danish EOs have layered new functions onto traditional collective functions. We also find significant variations in functional adaptation depending on the employer constituencies' exposure to international competition and position in value chains. We argue that these adaptations imply that the provision of collective goods, especially in collective bargaining, is no longer sufficient for the survival of Eos.


    Small change, big impact? Organisational membership rules and the exit of employers' associations from multiemployer bargaining in Germany

    Martin Behrens Markus Helfen
    Abstract: German employers' associations first introduced a so‐called "bargaining‐free" membership (BFM) category in 1990, giving companies the option to join and access services while avoiding the obligations arising to regular members from industry‐level collective agreements with unions. To explain how this phenomenon contributes to change in the German political economy, we investigate why some associations offer their members BFM status whereas others have refused to introduce this option. Controlling for influences such as size and industry, our multivariate analysis of survey data shows that four sets of influences are positively associated with BFM: the role of courts' judicial decisions as "door openers," structural characteristics of diverging business environments, the evaluation of multiemployer bargaining by the leadership of the association, and the strategic choices of associations.


    Employers' organisations as social movements: Political power and identity work

    Lisa A. Sezer
    Abstract: The literature on employers' and business organisations (EOs) has failed to analyse them as contentious organisations that apply identity work as a power resource to mobilise resources and members. This article is based on a qualitative case study of Islamic EOs in Turkey. Developing a social movement model of EOs, I analyse the mechanisms through which identity work with local religious collaborators facilitated collective action and political power. I find that the role of identity work was threefold: providing internal solidarity, securing external legitimacy, and supporting contentious institutional change by developing new policy ideas. This model can be applied more widely as EOs have increasingly shifted from traditional roles to take on social movement characteristics.


    The evolution of employers' organisations in the United Kingdom: Extending countervailing power

    Leon Gooberman Marco Hauptmeier Edmund Heery
    Abstract: The concept of countervailing power has been used to suggest that the power of unions explains the origins and development of employers' organisations (EOs). However, unions have declined since the 1970s, but EOs continue to play an important role in employment relations. If pressure from unions is not sufficient to explain continuing employer organisation, what does account for it? This article pursues this question by examining the evolution and activity of UK EOs between the 1960s and 2016. Our countervailing power argument goes beyond a sole focus on unions to include changing pressures and demands on EOs caused by the state such as individual rights legislation and campaigns by civil society organisations. The changing force exerted by these societal pressures helps to explain the shift of EOs' focus from collective bargaining, nowadays only pursued by a minority of EOs, to lobbying, provision of services, legal support, and training.





    Dr Rebecca (Bex) Hewett

    Assistant Professor in Human Resource Management


    Rotterdam School of Management
    Erasmus University


    Burgemeester Oudlaan 50
    3062 PA Rotterdam, The Netherlands

    Tel: +31(0)10 408 8640





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