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Who speaks for whom at work: worker voice and social dialogue


Countries Where The Impact Occurred

Australia Mexico Ireland UK

Summary of the Impact:

Over the last few decades academic research has often neglected issues of power and influence concerning labour market institutions, employment regulation, models of collaborative partnership between workers, unions and employers, and systems for inclusion and wider stakeholder voice. Through a body of research involving international collaborators, Tony Dundon has provided evidence on new processes and forms of worker voice and social dialogue that can enhance decent work goals, expose labour market inequalities, and support collaborative employment partnerships.

The research was undertaken with policymakers, consultancies, employers, employer associations, trade unions, HR managers, workers, and shop steward and non-union employee representatives. First, it impacted employee voice mechanisms at workplace levels. Second, it has impacted employee information and consultation policy, including European Directive transposition issues at national and organisational levels. Third, it has impacted labour market reforms for enhanced collective bargaining and work futures. Finally, it has impacted policies on accessing apprenticeship skills and learning in Ireland.


In terms of people and organisations: workers, trainees/apprentices, trade unions, multinational. The research contributes new insights concerning corporate behaviours and how employer groups function as dominant actors with ‘power over’ others in the labour market corporations, labour market agencies. In terms of mechanisms and practices: policy on employee engagement, equality and diversity, voice channels, and collective bargaining.

Sustainable Development Goals

  • 08 Decent work and economic growth
  • 09 Industry, innovation and infrastructure
  • 10 Reduced Inequalities

References to the research

Protecting the most vulnerable in an economic crisis: a participatory study of civil society organisations in Ireland

Authors: Carney, G., Dundon, T., and NiLeime, A.

Participatory action research with and within community activist groups: Capturing the collective experience of Ireland's Community and Voluntary Pillar in social partnership

Authors: Carney, G., Dundon, T., and NiLeime, A. (2012)

The shifting contours of collective bargaining in the manufacturing sector in the Republic of Ireland: Government, employer and union responses since the economic crisis

Authors: Hickland, E. and Dundon, T.

Non-union employee representation, union avoidance and the managerial agenda

Authors: Donaghey, J., Cullinane, N., Dundon, T and Dobbins, T.

The meanings and purpose of employee voice

Authors: Dundon, T., Wilkinson, A., Marchington, M., and Ackers, P.

Double-breasting voice systems: an assessment of motive, strategy and sustainability

Authors: Dundon, T., Cullinane, N., Donaghey, J., Wilkinson, A., Dobbins, T., and Hickland, E.

Employer occupation of regulatory space for the Employee Information and Consultation (I&C) Directive in Liberal Market Economies

Authors: Dundon, T., Dobbins, T., Cullinane, N., Hickland, E., and Donaghey, J.

Power Dynamics in Work and Employment Relationships: the capacity for employee influence.

Authors: Dundon, T., Martinez Lucio, M., Howcroft, D., Hughes, E., Keizer, A. and Walden, R.

Fragmented Demands: Platform and Gig-Working in the UK

Authors: Howcroft, D., Dundon, T. and Inversi, C.

Regulating for Mutual Gains: NonUnion Employee Representation and the Information & Consultation Directive

Authors: Cullinane, N., Donaghey, J., Dundon, T., Dobbins, T., and Hickland, E.