Do Immigrants Trust Trade Unions? A Study of 18 European Countries

Anastasia Gorodzeisky, Andrew Richards

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

3 Scopus citations


Migrants form growing proportions of national workforces in advanced capitalist societies. Yet little is known about their attitudes towards the principal agents of worker representation in their host countries, the trade unions, much less via cross-national research. Using European Values Survey data, we redress this imbalance by examining migrants’ levels of trust in unions, compared to native-born. We find higher levels of trust in unions by migrants (compared to native-born) in general and especially by migrants during their first decades after arrival and whose countries of origin are characterized by poor quality institutions. These findings have significant implications for unionization strategies towards migrants, especially given received wisdom portraying migrants as indifferent or distrustful towards unions.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)3-26
Number of pages24
JournalBritish Journal of Industrial Relations
Issue number1
StatePublished - 1 Mar 2020
Externally publishedYes

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Business, Management and Accounting (all)
  • Organizational Behavior and Human Resource Management
  • Management of Technology and Innovation


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