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Do Germany’s Global Players Liberalise? The European Works Councils of Volkswagen and Daimler – A Case-Study

Müller, Daniela (2010) Do Germany’s Global Players Liberalise? The European Works Councils of Volkswagen and Daimler – A Case-Study.

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Abstract:Liberalisation in general is something many scholars assume to happen. Since it usually occurs in a gradual way, it often goes unnoticed. One aspect in which liberalisation might occur is codetermination. Especially in Germany codetermination plays an important role, since German employees enjoy extensive participation rights in corporate decision-making processes, enshrined by law. Since 1996 multinational companies, operating in at least two states of the European Union have to form European Works Councils. The way European Works Councils are supposed to be structured is to a large extent left to the discretion of the companies. This is why European Works Councils may serve as a good ground for investigation whether companies liberalised their codetermination practices. The cases of the German companies Volkswagen and Daimler serve as an example whether the two companies liberalised in terms of codetermination. The investigation is based on the assumption that European Works Councils are shaped by the home country (i.e. country of the headquarter). It is found out that the European Works Councils of both companies show differences to the set-up and functioning of German work councils, which indicates that Volkswagen and Daimler indeed liberalised their codetermination practices in the European arena. Liberalisation will be measured by looking at two different models, namely the Coordinated Market Economy and the Liberal Market Economy. If the European Works Council of the two companies in investigation differ greatly from what is expected a works council would look like in a Coordinated Market Economy, it can be concluded that the company’s codetermination practices liberalised.
Item Type:Essay (Bachelor)
Faculty:BMS: Behavioural, Management and Social Sciences
Subject:88 social and public administration
Programme:European Studies BSc (56627)
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