Dr. Paul F. Clark, School Director and Professor, Labor and Employment Relations, Pennsylvania State University
Abstract: The International Trade Union Administrative Practices Study is an on-going longitudinal study that has been periodically gathering data on the internal administrative practices of national trade unions in the United States, the United Kingdom, Australia and Canada since 1990. How unions handle basic internal administrative functions directly impacts their effectiveness in their core external work of representing the interests of their members through collective bargaining and legislative/political action. The study provides insights into how unions address such central administrative issues as human resource policies, hiring practices, budgeting, and strategic planning. The main findings of the study to date is that trade unions have increasingly been working to professionalize their administrative practices, moving from a less formal, ad hoc approach to more formal, and more effective, approaches.