Innovative Unionism: Trade Unions, Challenges, Potentials and Strategies for the Future

The state of trade unionism in the various Regions of BWI is full of challenges. Diminishing trade union density, weak trade union structures, anti-union employers, limited organising possibilities, emasculated collective bargaining systems and informality of employment are some of the issues that contribute in preventing trade unions as strong and relevant social actors in the various countries.

Innovative Unionism: Trade Unions, Challenges, Potentials and Strategies for the Future

Building-construction and wood-forestry sectors also see the same obstacles for union revitalization. Is there a future for trade unions in the BWI sectors? What adjustments are needed? What strategic options of reforms should be undertaken? Are these changes internal or external of TU movement? There are many questions as we face the challenges.

In this backdrop, BWI is having a process of research and rethinking around “innovative unionism” in order to assist BWI (referring to BWI as global union and to its affiliates) in defining and deciding focused strategies and actions in revitalizing trade unionism in the BWI Sectors and Regions.

Complementing the writing of the think paper on innovative unionism and following its structure, this workshop aims for the following:

  1. To summarise the internal and external problems and challenges trade unions faced within the Region.
  2. To outline good and bad practices of trade unions in relation to organising, negotiating, and influencing policies in order to create larger frame for further recommendations.
  3. To draw conclusions from the sharing and discussions of the affiliates as well as from the initial findings and articulated points of the think paper and to provide recommendations for BWI actions/activities in the future.

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