Publication - Working Paper
Healthy industrial relations, or peaceful negotiations between workers and employers based on mutual benefits, is a key factor for sustained productivity growth. In developing countries, industrial relations are relatively immature, and issues of industrial disputes and strikes are becoming huge political concerns. However, little is known about industrial relations and union activities in developing countries based on micro-level data. In this project, through various data collection efforts, we investigate the characteristics of industrial relations and unions’ organisational structures as well as their relationships with firm productivity and working conditions in the garment sector in Myanmar, a developing country where national laws have allowed for the establishment of unions only since 2011.
Better understanding of industrial relations and unions in LICs is of critical importance to designing better legal frameworks. For example, countries as diverse as Myanmar, Bangladesh and Ethiopia are all currently considering changes in the regulatory environment for union activities. This project will build on a close collaboration with international organizations, the Ministry of Labour, union federations and business associations in Myanmar. The data and analysis generated can be utilized to guide the policies and regulations regarding industrial relations and unions.
This project conducts the following activities for investigating the characteristics of industrial relations in the garment sector in Myanmar.
Through the processes in the above, the project also explores the feasibility of evaluating interventions aimed at improving industrial relations inside factories in Myanmar.