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Consent, Contestability, and Unions
Umeå University, Faculty of Arts, Department of historical, philosophical and religious studies.
2019 (English)In: Business ethics quarterly, ISSN 1052-150X, E-ISSN 2153-3326, Vol. 29, no 2, p. 189-211Article in journal (Refereed) Published
Abstract [en]

This article provides a normative justification for unions. It discusses three arguments. The argument from consent justifies unions in some circumstances, but if the employer prefers to not bargain with unions, it may provide very little justification. The argument from contestability takes as its starting point the fact that employment contracts are incomplete contracts, where authority takes the place of complete contractual terms. This theory of contracts implies that consent to authority has been given under ignorance, and, therefore, that authority cannot be justified by consent. Contestability is a mechanism that can handle this problem for consent theory. It demands transparency, channels for voice, and a forum where contestations can be evaluated. This idea can be implemented in firms in different ways, but the argument from the separation of powers implies that unions are uniquely suited to implement contestability, since they are organized outside of the employer's domain of authority.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
Cambridge University Press, 2019. Vol. 29, no 2, p. 189-211
Keywords [en]
Unions, consent, contestability, separation of powers, incomplete contracts, employment contracts
National Category
Ethics
Identifiers
URN: urn:nbn:se:umu:diva-158736DOI: 10.1017/beq.2018.25ISI: 000463079800003OAI: oai:DiVA.org:umu-158736DiVA, id: diva2:1316856
Available from: 2019-05-21 Created: 2019-05-21 Last updated: 2019-05-21Bibliographically approved

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Lindblom, Lars

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