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Title:A Typology and Some Determinants of Shop Steward Modes of Role Behavior
Author(s):Reshef, Yonatan
Department / Program:Labor and Industrial Relations
Discipline:Labor and Industrial Relations
Degree Granting Institution:University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign
Subject(s):Economics, Labor
Abstract:A paucity of research exists on American shop steward behaviors and attitudes. In an attempt to add to our knowledge, this study develops an instrument to measure steward modes of behavior. Five categories of the steward role behavior construct are examined: radical, erratic, cooperative, passive, and failed.
The first four types are based on a comprehensive theoretical framework which is derived from the Marxist, pluralist, and functional-structuralist approaches. A fifth behavioral pattern is added to account for a failed behavioral possibility.
The theoretical typology has been subjected to empirical test using factor analysis. The resulting model includes only four behavioral patterns, namely, representative, erratic, passive, and failed. The representative behavioral pattern has not been predicted by the theoretical model. It is comprised of three, initially perceived as different, steward behaviors--radical, cooperative, and passive.
At the second stage of the research, part of the variance within each one of these role behaviors is accounted for by several independent variables.
The data for the research was secured through questionnaires. Two hundred and ninety eight shop stewards took part in the project. The shop stewards came from the Midwest and were from 25 different unions. The majority of the sample is comprised of whites (87%) and males (79%).
The major recommendation of the study is that stewards need special training, especially at two points in time during their role career. Newcomers are the most needy in this regard. They need some initial guidance and preparation about the kind of problems they are bound to confront and how to handle them. The second important turning point in the steward's career is around his eighth year in office. The recommendation here is that when a senior steward retains his position for another period beyond eight years he should pass through a special training program.
Issue Date:1986
Description:351 p.
Thesis (Ph.D.)--University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, 1986.
Other Identifier(s):(UMI)AAI8610973
Date Available in IDEALS:2014-12-16
Date Deposited:1986

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