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Labour Law and Social Progress: Holding the Line or Shifting the Boundaries?

Edited by Roger Blanpain†, Frank Hendrickx,
Guest editor D’Arcy du Toit


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Bulletin of Comparative Labour Relations Series Volume 92

Labour Law and Social Progress: Holding the Line or Shifting the Boundaries? is a collection of incisive essays that focus on the emerging global paradigm shift in labour and employment relations. For forty years the international watchword has been deregulation of labour law and of social security. Now, however, the rise in unemployment and lack of employment security, the dizzying inequality gulf, and the environmental disasters and mass migrations caused by this deregulation are generating an impetus that defines social justice no longer merely in terms of the equitable distribution of resources but also – and often primarily – in terms of the just recognition of persons. This book recognizes that the growing interdependence among people demands that labour rights are understood as an aspect of human rights, and thus envisaged at international level.

This volume of BCLR is based on a selection of papers presented at the 21st World Congress of the International Society for Labour and Social Security Law in Cape Town in 2015.

What’s in this book:

Contributions by twenty-one outstanding labour law scholars from a range of countries worldwide provide in-depth analysis of such aspects of the debate as the following:

  • collective action in the interests of market effectiveness as well as fair outcomes for workers;
  • right to strike;
  • resilience of trade unions and collective bargaining as mechanisms of labour market regulation;
  • importance of national policy, despite the influence of global market forces, in shaping national outcomes;
  • work as the locus of the relationship between humans and nature;
  • search for a legal foundation for corporate social responsibility;
  • litigation as an alternative to collective bargaining;
  • the role of collective labour relations for immigrants and disabled people;
  • lessons that developed countries could learn from mechanisms pioneered in developing countries in coping with conditions of austerity; and
  • the trap of soft law and of declarations of intent that weigh lightly in the face of the power of the interests at play in international trade.


The essays take stock of the dimensions of the current situation and explore paths leading to a better achievement of social justice in labour law.

How this will help you:

This book enables practitioners to gain a keen awareness of new and emerging issues in labour law from an international perspective. The essays presented provide an insight that economic development and the pursuit of social justice are inter-woven in a quest for social progress that includes mechanisms designed to eliminate unjustifiable inequality.This book provides abundant choices that can be pursued in practice and policy by lawyers and other parties committed to the emerging political will to respect fundamental rights and to broadly improve labour and environmental protection.


Pages 344
Last Updated 04/22/2016
Update Frequency As Needed
Product Line Kluwer Law International
ISBN 9789041167477
SKU 10059310-0001
Table of Contents

Notes on Contributors


CHAPTER 1 What International Social Justice in the Twenty-First Century? Alain Supiot

CHAPTER 2 The Contribution of Labour Law to Economic Development and Growth Simon Deakin

CHAPTER 3 Collective Bargaining … and Beyond: Debates, Problems and Alternatives for Worker Protection Graciela Bensusán

CHAPTER 4 Challenging the Borders of Labour Rights Judy Fudge

CHAPTER 5 Decolonizing Labour Law: A Few Comments Adelle Blackett

CHAPTER 6 Labour in a Borderless Market Isabelle Vacarie

CHAPTER 7 Asymmetries, Adversity and Labour Rights: Thoughts from a Developing Region Emma Fergus & Thierry Galani Tiemeni

CHAPTER 8 The Future of Labour Law in a Globalized or Regionalized World Paul Smit

CHAPTER 9 The Challenges for Labour Law and Social Security Systems at the Labour-Social Security Interface Keith Puttick

CHAPTER 10 Transformation and Functional Evolution of Collective Bargaining Stefano Bellomo

CHAPTER 11 Litigation as an Alternative to Collective Bargaining Graeme Colgan

CHAPTER 12 Atypical Employment in the European Aviation Sector Yves Jorens, Dirk Gillis & Lien Valcke

CHAPTER 13 The Reunification of the World of Work: The Role of Collective Labour Relations for Immigrants and Disabled People Carla Spinelli & Monica McBritton

CHAPTER 14 The Right to Strike in the Public Sector: A Catch 22 between Fundamental Right and Fundamental Prohibition – The Cases of Denmark and Germany with Some Comparative Belgian and Dutch Elements Alexander de Becker

CHAPTER 15 Recognition of the Right to Strike (Terms and Conditions Apply) D’Arcy du Toit

CHAPTER 16 Determining the Scope of Freedom of Association with regard to Right to Strike Gaye Burcu Yildiz


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