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The contingencies of partnership: experiences from the training reform agenda in Australian manufacturing
online resourceposted on 2017-06-05, 04:00 authored by Cooney, Richard
This paper examines the development of an antecedent model of social partnership, the social 'accord' employed by the Labor Government in Australia during the period 1983-1996. The specific focus of the paper is upon the implementation of the Training Reform Agenda (TRA) in Australian manufacturing. The TRA was designed to provide for the upskilling of existing employees and the enhanced vocational preparation of new employees. This was a joint objective of government, business and union policy and one designed to encourage the growth of high-wage, high-skill industries. The achievement of this objective was, however, limited. Social partnership, in the case of the TRA, proved to be a way of legitimating a work change process from which there was, by and large, one winner. The partnerships formed under the aegis of the TRA had a limited lifespan and represented a contingent form of relationship between the partners, rather than a seachange in relations.