Project theme 3

Local negotiations and the business-based contract model

In recent years, several collective agreements have paved the way for local agreements that deviate from the sector agreements. The prerequisite for such decentralized bargaining is strong and representative parties at the company level. If the local parties are able to reach local agreements, the company often achieves increased efficiency and competitiveness. One can imagine that many companies succeed in creating win–win agreements, through which both management and employees obtain benefits. But what happens when management and shop stewards cannot find common ground? Are there companies for which local agreements are regarded as win–lose agreements – that is, where only one party is winning? This possibility raises a number of questions for the Danish model at the local level:

  • whether or not the implementation and administration of sector agreements at company level is successful
  • the strengths and weaknesses in the decentralization of the bargaining system
  • the experience of management and shop stewards in the coordination of collective agreements.