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Settling workplace disputes – review published

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Protesters - Photo Central Audiovisual Library, European Commission

Acas has published a research report on the dynamics of public sector disputes and the role of third parties in resolving them. The report, by Susan Corby of the University of Greenwich, analyses different approaches to settling public sector disputes and looks at how these might develop in future.

It also compares approaches used in public sector and private sector disputes.

The review’s conclusions were that:

  • Since 1997 roughly half of all public sector disputes in which Acas was involved were pay related.

  • In the last six years, about half of all public sector disputes in which Acas conciliated were resolved.

  • An impartial outsider often plays a key role in dispute resolution.

  • Overall there is a case-by-case and pragmatic approach to employment relations – the dynamics and mechanisms used are different for every dispute.

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