The extent and nature of collective employee representation in multinational companies (MNCs) in Ireland has been the subject of intense debate over recent decades. Yet despite numerous commentaries on this and other aspects of industrial relations (IR) in MNCs in Ireland, we have no overall, authoritative picture of the ways in which MNCs manage IR (cf. McDonnell et al., 2007). This chapter reports findings from the first large-scale representative survey of employment practice in MNCs in Ireland. Using data from some 260 MNCs, we present findings on key aspects of IR practice, particularly in regard to trade union recognition and avoidance, collective bargaining and European Works Councils (EWCs). This chapter is organised into four sections. In the first, we summarily profile MNCs in Ireland and IR therein. The second focuses on our research methodology. The next section outlines the main findings of the survey, addressing issues such as trade union recognition, union density, non-union structures of employee representation, collective bargaining and EWCs. The fourth and final section concludes the chapter with a brief summary of the findings.
The State of the Unions: Challenges Facing Organised Labour in Ireland p. 48-65