Trade unions are considered to be key political actors in the formation of welfare states. Their importance for the current fate of welfare states, however, has been disputed within academia. Aiming to contribute to this vast body of literature, this article analyses the participation of Spanish trade unions in labour market reforms since the restitution of democracy in Spain. The article analyses the strategic choices open to trade unions, particularly the choice of calling for mobilisation, and why unions make the choices that they do. Mobilisation in the form of a general strike constitutes unions’ last and most extreme resort for confronting the government. We also explain the context in which such mobilisations are able to prevent retrenchment measures attempted by the government

Additional Metadata
Keywords Trade unions, mobilisations, strategic choices, labour market reforms, retrenchment
Persistent URL
Journal Transfer: European Review of Labour and Research
Del Rio Loira, P.S., & Fenger, H.J.M. (2019). Spanish trade unions against labour market reforms. Transfer: European Review of Labour and Research, 25(4). Retrieved from