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Policy Analysis In Australia$
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Kate Crowley

Print publication date: 2015

Print ISBN-13: 9781447310273

Published to Policy Press Scholarship Online: May 2016

DOI: 10.1332/policypress/9781447310273.001.0001

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Policy and the labour movement

Policy and the labour movement

Chapter:
(p.231) Fifteen Policy and the labour movement
Source:
Policy Analysis In Australia
Author(s):

Rae Cooper

Bradon Ellem

Chris F. Wright

Publisher:
Policy Press
DOI:10.1332/policypress/9781447310273.003.0015

How have Australian trade unions attempted to influence public policy development? In analysing union influence on public policy-making 1983-2013, this chapter identifies several distinct patterns of engagement by unions with the policy process during three very different political and policy environments. The chapter sees unions as ‘core insiders’ in the policy-making process under the Hawke-Keating Labor government, as ‘outsiders of necessity’ under the Howard conservative Coalition government, and as a hybrid of ‘specialist insider groups’ and ‘outsider groups of choice’ under the Rudd/Gillard Labor government. While these shifts in unions’ strategic orientation can be understood as responses to changes in the policy and political agendas of respective governments, they also reflect changes in the structure and organisation of – and strategic thinking within – the labour movement.

Keywords:   Australian policy analysis, labour movement, policy capacity, trade unions, policy making

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