The Developing Role of Unions in China's Foreign-Invested Enterprises

Andy W. Chan, Ed SNAPE, Michelle S. Luo, Yujuan Zhai

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

15 Citations (Scopus)


This article evaluates the development of Chinese enterprise unions, drawing on case-study evidence from foreign-invested enterprises in the Pearl River Delta. Findings suggest that it was difficult for such employers to resist the establishment of an enterprise union. However, they generally sought to co-opt the union to meet organizational needs. Management strategy was critical in shaping the union's role, and our evidence suggests that this was influenced by factors such as home-country policies, the expectations of overseas customers, management ideology and pressures from the ACFTU and the Party-State to comply with the requirement for a union. The implications for the role of unions are evaluated.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)602-625
Number of pages24
JournalBritish Journal of Industrial Relations
Issue number3
Publication statusPublished - Sep 2017

Scopus Subject Areas

  • Business, Management and Accounting(all)
  • Organizational Behavior and Human Resource Management
  • Management of Technology and Innovation


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