This article deals with issues relating to trade union density and the fact that while over the past 30 years, union densities have followed a declining path in all regions, this retreat was not uniform across space. Analysis of the Labour Force Survey reveals that Wales exhibits among the highest levels of union density in the UK. The reasons for this are examined through statistical analysis, historical analysis and interview data. These analyses reveal that there appear to be intrinsic differences in the nature of workplace representation in Wales; one linked to a particular style of trade unionism supported by the authority of a devolved state that continue to contribute to higher levels of membership.
Published: September 2011