Do Industrial Disputes Reduce Employment? Evidence from South Africa

A unique administrative database is utilized to provide a more nuanced and empirically based measure of employment protection for the labour market in South Africa. It is proposed to measure employment protection as a function of the quantity and efficiency parameters of the country’s dispute resolution body. Secondly, it is attempted to determine the impact of the employment protection measure (derived from the quantity of industrial disputes and the efficiency with which these disputes are resolved) on the South African labour market through the use of an augmented Lazear model. Regional and time-dependent data are utilised to predict the effect that increased industrial disputes have on employment in South Africa.