The process of control within a trade union: a study of internal power in the A. U. E. W.

James, Lawrence E. The process of control within a trade union: a study of internal power in the A. U. E. W. PHD thesis, Aston University.

Abstract

This thesis examines the nature of power and control in trade unions. Two theoretical themes are developed; the first concerns the concept of power and related variables such as authority and control, the second concerns the concept of trade union government in terms of democracy, oligarchy and polyarchy. It is suggested that trade union government may most appropriately be described by the term 'polyarchy' A model is proposed which aids the analysis of polyarchic trade union government. This model treats the acquisition and maintenance of power and control as competitive processes mediated by the structural and subjective conditions of the competitive arena. Two case studies are presented in which these processes are seen at work in the engineering section of the Amalgamated Union of Engineering Workers. The first examines a conflict between the Manchester district committee and the Executive Council, the second examines a conflict between the Manchester district committee and a workshop organization in the district. The model and case studies together comprise a statement about power and control in the A.U.E.W. The framework of the thesis suggests several ways in which the theoretical and empirical analysis may be developed towards a comprehensive theory of trade union government.

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Institution: Aston University
Uncontrolled Keywords: control,trade union,internal power,A. U. E. W.

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