Role of the State

The State is composed of all institutions with implementation and enforcement of government policy, including the parliament, judiciary, public service and defense forces. , However, Metzger thinks that she is not the sort of believer that the State is a necessary institution at all. Hence, there is no clear way to define the State, and there is no exact theory about the relationship between state and industrial relations. In this essay, I will talk about the general idea of Richard Hyman’s article, and concentrate on the different roles of state.

According to Hyman, the State refers to the role of political institution in socio-economic relations, which is distinctive and theoretical. Although, there is diversity of the definitions of the state, there is still some crossover among them by Weber, Skocpol. This overlap is in terms of legitimacy, community and domination. In Mann’s words, state power has become ‘despotic’. Also, states are different as governments. The industrial relations have difficult relationships with the Stat. .

There are three movements in capitalist economies: the imposition constraint on the disruptive social consequences of market liberalism, and the deliberate unraveling of this regulatory web. There are also three contradicting functions of state activity to employment relation, which are accumulation, pacification and legitimization. The laissez- faire, the social state and the developmental state where three different types of state which shapes the regime of industrial relations, now turning to be the important advantage in the development of economy.

The concept of corporatism was popular in industrial relations after 1970s. Unions and employers’ associations gained a privilege from macro- policy formulation. Since the 1980s, corporatist arrangements had become challenged. Trade unions had become weak, employers’ associations have been kept stable, and governments have slowly moved out from an old regime. The coming of globalization trade liberalization, helped to integrate the production of the multi-national enterprises, and moved the cross- national trade barriers away. The rooted employers in the national economy had been versus to deregulation.

The State plays varied roles in industrial relations and significant. Therefore, it is worthwhile to discuss. It is the central component of any national institutions, extending nationally and internationally over the time. From recent studies, it is stated that all markets economies’ institutional forms are influenced socially and economically, although they have common dynamics.

What is more, many researchers thought that some functional forms were independent of different institutions, such as the relations of ‘institutional interlock’ and ‘institutional complementarity’? Therefore, facing the institutional supports, firms will accept coordination. The roles of state in the industrial relations are influenced by its economic, social or legal framework.

The seven main functions of the state shaping the industrial relations are classified into major employer, procedural regulation, substantive employment rights, labour market structural, the pursuit of ’employability’ from demand to supply, the welfare state, and the ‘industrial citizenship’. Among these functions, the roles of major employer, procedural regulation and substantive are the most. notable.

“All states are employers’. The State usual is the largest employer in the country. For example, in Australia, there are a third of labour force working for government or related groups. This role of major employer contributes the influence to industrial relations by government directly. It also works as a model for providing precedents like employment conditions and wages to private sector employers.

For example, the maternity leave which introduced by private sector and become a basic right. ‘The State helps to provide employment to disadvantaged or minority groups, introduce new working arrangements, and experiment with different decision- making or time- keeping models.’ However, the State as a major employer is seen as ‘an inevitable source of corruption, inefficient allocation of resources, unregulated redistribution of wealth and an obstruction of economic process.’ Besides these, major tensions are caused by the greater assertiveness of skilled workers to egalitarian wage policy.

Procedural rules and substantive rules are established by legislation according to the regulated behaviour of parties to employment relationship. As Balnave at el state, the procedural rules are ‘concerned with how negotiation or bargaining is carried out, and contain the procedures that need to be followed by the involvement of diversity of parties,’ and the substantive rules are ‘concerned with what is negotiated and whether certain issues can be considered in jurisdictions.’

These two rules help to determine how will the bargaining occur between the different parties. They determine what is illegal to industrial conflict, what industrial institutions could be power- given whether trader unions necessary, and so on. However, Orton asserts that ‘the unique attribute of the modern state is the power of legitimized coercion.’The roles of states are interconnected with others. For example, the procedural regulation and substantive employment are connected with state welfare from the decision of employment conditions. Furthermore, if the state largely moves out from economic life, it will result in efficiency, income distribution, and technological progress.

In conclusion, the state cannot be defined in generally as well as the relationship between the State and industrial relations. The roles of the state can be divided into seven major areas. The role of major employer and the roles of procedural regulation and substantive employment are most significant. There are connections between each role of the state, and it is better to let the State have less control and power.

ReferencesBalnave, N. Brown, J. Maconachie, G, & Stone. R. (2007). Employment Relations in Australia. Milton: John Wiley & Sons Australia, Ltd.

Hyman, B.(2008), ‘The State in Industrial Relations’, in P.Blyton, N. Bacon, J. Fiorito & E. Heery (eds), The Sage Handbook of Industrial Relations, Sage. London.

Kotz, D (2005). The Role of the State in Economic Transformation:Comparing the TransitionThe Role of the State in Economic Transformation:Comparing the Transition. [On-line]. Available:, P. (2004). Diminished Capacity. [ On-line]. Available: