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How might we protect the wages of the weak?

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Throughout much of the 20th century, the wages of the weak were enhanced, directly or indirectly, by the strength of trade unions. In the past two or three decades, global competitive pressures have undermined them. The consequent increase of inequality threatens social stability. One response has been greater government intervention with, for example, more use of minimum wages. Another response is the mobilisation of consumers to protect employment standards by reputational threats to brand names. Wages are too important to society to be left to unconstrained market forces.

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This talk is part of the Madingley Lectures series.

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