Collective bargaining and skill formation: evidence from mixed methods

The standard economics view suggests that steps to improve a country’s competitiveness include a general emphasis on deregulation and decentralization of industrial relations. In this paper, we contribute to this debate by studying how firm-level collective agreements affect workplace training, a key ingredient to competitiveness. Theoretically, firm-level bargaining may affect workplace training in many ways, but quantitative analysis is usually ill equipped to provide an adequate account of them. This is where our paper mostly contributes. In the spirit of opening the “black box” of firm-level bargaining, we mix together quantitative and qualitative strategies. Following a sequential research design, our results suggest that decentralized collective agreements favor workplace training inasmuch as they grant to employers the access to dedicated financing schemes.