Free University Berlin
Globalization has facilitated the spread of investments and manufacturing by transnational corporations (TNCs), opening new opportunities, but also posing new challenges to their business models and highlighting the need for a restructuring of employment and production, writes DAAD/AICGS Fellow Dr. Michael Fichter. Dr. Fichter focuses on the role of labor relations in the operations and policies of German TNCs in the United States and examines if there is any convergence of labor relations policies across the Atlantic.
When the Federal Republic of Germany was founded in May 1949, a major cornerstone of its cooperative and stable system of labor relations was already in place. Over a month earlier, the Collective Agreements Act had come into effect, and
to this day, virtually unchanged, it has been the foundation upon which trade unions and employers’ associations have autonomously set the standards for wages and working conditions in contracts negotiated at the sectoral level (Flächentarifvertrag)…