1989–2005 — Internal Change: Consolidation and Integration

  • George Myconos
Part of the International Political Economy Series book series (IPES)

Abstract

A profile of today’s transnational community of labour organizations reveals a network ‘headed’ by the International Confederation of Free Trade Unions. Greater organizational consolidation continues, with plans to form a single, unified peak body incorporating all leading confederations revealed ahead of the ICFTU’s Eighteenth World Congress in Japan, December, 2004.219 A reduced number of industry-specific trade secretariats continue to work closely with the ICFTU. On a vertical plane, there exist a myriad of regional organizations that together represent a secondary level of representation. Highly extended and detached forms of internal relationships prevail. These manifest themselves in high levels of delegated representation — be it in distant intra-union fora, or in those associated with inter-governmental organizations — and also in the use of web-based advocacy. This profile also reveals a community of labour organizations committed to statist developmentalism; but at the same time, one that is strident in its advocacy in defence of human rights. Let us now dismantle this profile, and contrast each dimension of change — the organizational, integrative, and political — with those of previous eras. In so doing, we will gain a better understanding of the ways in which organized labour has integrated across national borders, as well as the ways in which it has projected itself outwards and away from the realm of state-mediated politics. Ultimately, we will find that a more integrated network has in some ways engaged in a deeper form of globalization; but it has done so in ways that do not necessarily entail a turning away from the state.

Keywords

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Notes

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© George Myconos 2005

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  • George Myconos

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