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date: 24 June 2019

Abstract and Keywords

This chapter examines Sweden’s labor market organizations and labor market institutions, showing what is distinctive about Sweden’s current labor market model, and how it differs from the highly centralized model of the past. The first section deals with the classical “Swedish model,” the challenges to this model in the 1980s and 1990s, and the manner in which it has been reformed. A section on the employer organizations and a section on the unions are followed by a section that analyzes contemporary industrial relations. The ultimate break with centralization came in 1990 when the employers’ peak-level organization openly abdicated as a corporatist negotiating partner. However, the decentralization and movement toward an uncoordinated labor market in the 1990s became an interregnum between two different means of wage coordination. Basically, there has been a transition from central wage bargaining to coordination through pattern bargaining.

Keywords: trade unions, employer organizations, industrial relations, corporatism, wage bargaining

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