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Innovative trade union practices addressing growing precarity characterised by rescaled governance and the shrinking welfare state: the case of Slovenia

Innovative trade union practices addressing growing precarity characterised by rescaled governance and the shrinking welfare state: the case of Slovenia

Samaluk, Barbara (2017) Innovative trade union practices addressing growing precarity characterised by rescaled governance and the shrinking welfare state: the case of Slovenia. In: Bernaciak, Magdalena and Kahancová, Marta, (eds.) Beyond the Crisis: Strategic Innovation Within CEE Trade Union Movements. ETUI, Brussels, pp. 197-217.

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Abstract

This chapter explores innovative trade union practices addressing precarity in Slovenia. It conceptualises precarity as vulnerability and disaffiliation that does not only affect one’s job quality or hinders one’s integration into the labour market but also one’s inclusion in the broader social system and access to rights that used to be part of the established compromise of Keynesian welfare states. This poses challenges for the representation of the growing number of precarious workers and ‘non-deserving’ (non)citizens who have been excluded from the labour market and broader social and rights systems. The wider conceptualisation of precarity serves as a point of departure upon which innovation within the Slovenian trade union movement is assessed; it also determines the selection of presented case studies in this chapter.

The erosion of labour and social rights brought de-unionisation and interest fragmentation, but it also stimulated innovative forms of organising of increasingly precarious and non-unionised workers and (non)citizens. This chapter focuses on several initiatives that have emerged during the crisis within or in close relation to Slovenia’s biggest trade union confederation. These have brought important innovations to traditional trade union activities such as the involvement of diverse target groups, the creation of innovative organisational structures and the use of non-traditional strategies to address rescaled class politics and labour market governance. These initiatives are the Counselling Office for Migrants project; trade union Young Plus; and the Movement for Decent Work and Welfare Society, together with the recently established Trade Union of the Precarious.

The chapter is structured as follows. Section one begins by providing background information on the Slovenian trade union movement and its development, especially in regard to how it was affected by the current economic crisis. This particular context is also used to provide key concepts related to rescaled governance, changing welfare states and growing precarity. Section two presents each of the above initiatives and its innovative characteristics. These are then jointly discussed and assessed in the concluding section.

Item Type: Book Section
Additional Information: CITATION: Samaluk, B. (Forthcoming) Innovative trade union practices addressing growing precarity characterised by rescaled governance and the shrinking welfare state: the case of Slovenia, in Magdalena Bernaciak and Marta Kahancová (eds): Beyond the crisis: Strategic innovation within CEE trade union movements, Brussels: ETUI.
Uncontrolled Keywords: Trade unions; Innovation; Slovenia; Precarity
Subjects: H Social Sciences > HV Social pathology. Social and public welfare
Faculty / Department / Research Group: Faculty of Business
Faculty of Business > Department of Human Resources & Organisational Behaviour
Faculty of Business > Centre for Work and Employment Research (CREW) > Work & Employment Research Unit (WERU)
Last Modified: 16 May 2019 13:25
Selected for GREAT 2016: None
Selected for GREAT 2017: None
Selected for GREAT 2018: GREAT b
Selected for GREAT 2019: GREAT 2
URI: http://gala.gre.ac.uk/id/eprint/16330

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