What enterprise? Whose bargain? Politicians face their principals

Glyn Davis, Margaret Gardner

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleResearchpeer-review


The introduction of enterprise bargaining poses a fascinating dilemma: with whom should politicians negotiate about their wages and conditions? The question has different implications for Labor and the Coalition. The form of enterprise bargaining proposed by the Government can accommodate current arrangements for MP salaries, though not without some special pleading. The more radical proposals of the Coalition, which emphasise a principal—agent relationship between employer and employee, pose greater challenges. This paper explores the dilemma of salaries for MPs under enterprise bargaining, and suggests a policy solution which ensures that politicians are subject to the rules they propose for others.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)279-298
Number of pages20
JournalThe Economic and Labour Relations Review
Issue number2
Publication statusPublished - 1 Jan 1993
Externally publishedYes

Cite this