Alex Bryson

National Institute of Economic and Social Research, Centre for Economic Performance, UK

There are many misconceptions about the role of trade unions in modern labour markets. I hope this review, like others in this excellent World of Labor project, will help inform policymakers and academics alike when thinking about trade unionism and its impact on workers and firms

IZA World of Labor role

Author, Topic spokesperson

Current position

Head of Employment Group and Principal Research Fellow, National Institute of Economic and Social Research, UK

Research interest

Labour economics, industrial relations, policy evaluation

Positions/functions as a policy advisor

Member of the Workplace Employment Relations Survey Steering Committee

Past positions

Editor, British Journal of Industrial Relations, 2005–2009; Wertheim Fellow, Harvard Law School and National Bureau of Economic Research, 2005–2006


PhD Sociology, University of Bristol, 2013

Selected publications

  • Employment Relations in the Shadow of Recession: Findings from the 2011 Workplace Employment Relations Study. Basingstoke: Palgrave MacMillan, 2013 (with B. van Wanrooy, H. Bewley, J. Forth, L. Stokes, and S. Wood).

  • The Evolution of the Modern British Workplace. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 2009 (W. Brown, J. Forth, and K. Whitfield).

  • “What effect do unions have on wages now and would ‘what do unions do?’ be surprised.” In: Bennett, J.T., and B. E. Kaufman (eds). What Do Unions Do?: A Twenty-Year Perspective. New Brunswick, NJ: Transaction Publishers, 2007; pp. 79–113 (with D. Blanchflower).

  • Inside the Workplace: Findings from the 2004 Workplace Employment Relations Survey. London: Routledge, 2006 (with B. Kersley, C. Alpin, J. Forth, H. Bewley, G. Dix, and S. Oxenbridge).

  • All Change at Work? London: Routledge, 2000 (with N. Millward and J. Forth).