49 Indus. & Lab. Rel. Rev. 58 (1995-1996)
Worker Participation and Productivity in Labor-Managed and Participatory Capitalist Firms: A Meta-Analysis

handle is hein.journals/ialrr49 and id is 60 raw text is: WORKER PARTICIPATION AND PRODUCTIVITY
IN LABOR-MANAGED AND PARTICIPATORY
CAPITALIST FIRMS: A META-ANALYSIS
CHRIS DOUCOULIAGOS*
Using meta-analytic techniques, the author synthesizes the results of
43 published studies to investigate the effects on productivity of various
forms of worker participation: worker participation in decision making;
mandated codetermination; profit sharing; worker ownership (employee
stock ownership or individual worker ownership of the firm's assets);
and collective ownership of assets (workers' collective ownership of
reserves over which they have no individual claim). He finds that
codetermination laws are negatively associated with productivity, but
profit sharing, worker ownership, and worker participation in decision
making are all positively associated with productivity. All the observed
correlations are stronger among labor-managed firms (firms owned and
controlled by workers) than among participatory capitalist firms (firms
adopting one or more participation schemes involving employees, such
as ESOPs or quality circles).
Scientists have known for centuries that a single study will not resolve a
major issue. Indeed, a small sample study will not even resolve a minor issue.
Thus, the foundation of science is the cumulation of knowledge from the
results of many studies.
Hunter and Schmidt, Methods of Meta-Analysis

nterest in the effects of worker participa-
tion on enterprise performance has
grown phenomenally. In general, the lit-
erature can be divided into two camps.
*Chris Doucouliagos is a lecturer at the School of
Economics, Deakin University. This paper benefited
substantially from discussions with, and assistance
from, George Tratolos, Phillip Hone, Douglas Kruse,
Asraul Hoque, and participants in seminars at Deakin
and Monash Universities.

Supporters of participation argue that it
strengthens workers' commitment to the
firm, reduces the need for costly monitor-
ing, and increases work effort and hence
All the data used in this study, as well as the
computer program and a technical appendix, are
available from the author at the School of Economics,
Deakin University, 221 Burwood Highway, Burwood,
Victoria, 3125, Australia.

Industrial and Labor Relations Review, Vol. 49, No. 1 (October 1995). © by Cornell University.
0019-7939/95/4901 $01.00

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