World Cities and Union Renewal



This article discusses how interpretive accounts and practices of labour union renewal in the Anglo-American context are linked to the forms of post-industrialism and polarized labour markets evident in world cities. I accordingly argue that the world city is implicated in various components of union renewal, including changing organizational structures, intensive organizing, leadership and democracy, coalition building, new labour internationalism, and labour-management cooperation. Furthermore, the influence of the world city can limit both the scope and scale of the union renewal narratives and practices. The article concludes with a call for the union renewal project to expand beyond world city frameworks and explore multiple sectors and spaces.