Economic Crisis and New Forms of Worker Organizing

Monday, 11 July 2016: 16:00-17:30
Location: Hörsaal 16 (Main Building)
RC44 Labor Movements (host committee)

Language: English

The economic crisis that engulfed many countries beginning in 2008 has had profound and varying effects on worker organizing. According to a recent ILO World of Work report, strikes and street demonstrations increased in some countries and declined in others. Almost everywhere, however, traditional union structures and modes of politics have been challenged by a new reality. This session invites both theoretically engaged and empirically rich papers that examine new forms of worker organizing that have been experimented with in the course of the last decade. 
Theoretically, we especially encourage papers that connect specific dynamics of the economic and political crisis to workers’ organization and mobilization. In both the Global North and South, people contend with deep insecurities of work and of life. Yet it remains unclear how these deep insecurities are articulated with the question of who, where and how capital is produced in historically and geographically uneven world regions or how different compositions of capital and politics create new subaltern groups, new collective subjectivities and new (or renewed) forms of struggles. 
Empirically, we are interested in a wide range of campaigns by workers and community groups to redressing insecurity and low-wage work, from living and minimum wage struggles to innovative strategies of trade unionism to altogether new alternatives.
Session Organizers:
Kim VOSS, University of California, Berkeley, USA, Bryan EVANS, Ryerson University, Canada and Maurizio ATZENI, Centre for Labour Relations, National Research Council of Argentina (CEIL/CONICET), Argentina
A Permanent State of Crisis? Lessons from Organizing Migrant and Immigrant Workers in Quebec
Aziz CHOUDRY, McGill University, Canada; Mostafa HENAWAY, Immigrant Workers Centre, Canada; Manuel SALAMANCA, McGill University, Canada
Representation of the Losers of the Crisis: A Comparison of Systems and Strategies of Representation of Vulnerable Workers
Melanie Simms SIMMS, University of Leicester, United Kingdom; Bianca BECCALLI, University of Milan, Italy; Enrico PUGLIESE, CNR, Italy; Ingrid ARTUS, FAU, Germany; Guglielmo MEARDI, University of Warwick, United Kingdom
See more of: RC44 Labor Movements
See more of: Research Committees