ISSN (Print) - 0012-9976 | ISSN (Online) - 2349-8846

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Outline of an IR Theory of Industrial Conflict

Focusing on Bombay, locations around Bombay and more distant labour market areas in the state and on the basis of a sample of about 180 plants or other establishments controlled by 125 companies belonging largely to the private sector, this paper elaborates an industrial relations theory of industrial conflict Conflict is seen as part of a bargaining process and the notion that the strike experience of individual plants is determined fundamentally by the industry to which they belong is rejected. Conflict is seen as belonging not to the plant itself but to its experience and the space described is phenomenological and not objective. Consequently there is no determinism which can explicate a pattern of conflict and the diversity of available choices does not bind workers to set responses. Likewise even if management behaviour conforms to certain determinisms even managers have choices. The study concentrates on plants in manufacturing sectors which may be called 'modern', that is, whose evolution was a product of the industrial expansion of the 1950s.

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