The purpose of this blog is to provide analytical commentary on formal and informal labour organisations and their attempts to resist ever more brutal forms of exploitation in today’s neo-liberal, global capitalism.

Thursday, 28 March 2013

European trade unions and the Struggle for Public Services

Against the background of the global financial crisis and the Eurozone sovereign debt crisis, the public sector and services have come under heavy restructuring and privatisation pressure across Europe. In this guest post, Christoph Hermann assesses a variety of different strategies, European trade unions have adopted in defence of the public sector. Ultimately, he argues, the strengthening of the link between service producers and service users has to be at the centre of a successful strategy of resistance.

Sunday, 24 March 2013

Neo-liberal restructuring of Turkish Higher Education: An Ordinary Story from Ordu University.

Restructuring in Higher Education around narrow objectives of employability with a focus on economic benefits is not only occurring in the UK. Turkey too is experiencing increasing pressures along this line. In this guest post, Nuray Sancar outlines some of the authoritarian methods with which restructuring is imposed, but also the fledgling movement of resisting and contesting neo-liberal restructuring.

Friday, 22 March 2013

The Age of Austerity: Fighting Cuts and Privatisation – Broxtowe Save Our NHS!

Higher Education (HE) in the UK is under attack. Members of staff see a year on year decline in their real income and their pensions undermined, students face tuition fees of up to £9000 per year. There are clear signs that more and more parts of HE are to be privatised. And yet, HE is not the only sector suffering from cuts and austerity in the UK. The national health service, provisions for disabled people and Schools are subject to similar restructuring. In order to highlight the broader dimension of the coalition government’s assault on the welfare state, the local UCU association at Nottingham University organised an event on Friday, 15 March to discuss the impact on the health service and some local moments of resistance.

Monday, 18 March 2013

The Trouble with Indonesian Labour: Notes on Recent Struggles of Labour in Post New Order Indonesia.

President Suharto's authoritarian regime came to an end in 1998. 15 years later, the Indonesian labour movement is still highly fragmented and without real impact on policy-making. In this guest post, Anisa Santoso assesses the current situation of the Indonesian trade unions. 

Friday, 15 March 2013

The Privatisation and Internationalisation of Public Services in a Time of Austerity

Why is austerity the dominant response to the global financial crisis and how can it be resisted? How is privatisation affecting sectors such as health services and education? These and related questions were discussed at the workshop A Political Economy of the Privatisation and Internationalisation of Public Services in a Time of Austerity, held in the Business School of the University of Hertfordshire on 1 and 2 March 2013. In this post, I will draw on some of the themes discussed at this workshop.

Sunday, 10 March 2013

Renewal through strike - Erneuerung durch Streik!

Renewal through strike - this was the title of a highly important conference of left-wing trade unionists in Stuttgart/Germany from 1 to 3 March 2013. Organized by the Rosa-Luxemburg-Foundation and supported by the second biggest German union ver.di, more than 500 trade unionists came from all over Germany and from nearly all industrial sectors to discuss the challenges of neoliberalism for the labour movement. In this guest post, Marianne Bieler and Markus Peiter provide an overview of the key discussions at this conference.