Unions, Temporary Employment and Hours of Work: A Tale of Two Countries

  • Marco Francesconi University of Essex
  • Carlos García Serrano
Palabras clave: Collective bargaining, trade unions, temporary employment, hours of work


This paper is the first attempt to analyse the relationship between unionisation, temporary employment and non-standard hours of work, comparing Spain and Britain, which are characterised by relatively different labour market structures and substantially different degrees of employment protections. Despite such differences, these two countries show similar responses of unionisation to flexible employment. In particular, we find that union recognition in Britain and firm-level union presence in Spain do not respond to changes in long hours of work and overtime hours, whereas temporary employment is negatively correlated with union coverage in both countries. We find, however, some differences between the two countries when the samples are stratified by industry.