Regoverning the Workplace

From Self-Regulation to Co-Regulation

Cynthia Estlund

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This original book seeks to shape current trends toward employer self-regulation into a new paradigm of workplace governance in which workers participate. The decline of collective bargaining and the parallel rise of employment law have left workers with an abundance of legal rights but no representation at work. Without representation, even workers’ legal rights are often under-enforced. At the same time, however, many legal and social forces have pushed firms to self-regulate—to take on the task of realizing public norms through internal compliance structures.


Cynthia Estlund argues that the trend toward self-regulation is here to stay, and that worker-friendly reformers should seek not to stop that trend but to steer it by securing for workers an effective voice within self-regulatory processes. If the law can be retooled to encourage forms of self-regulation in which workers participate, it can help both to promote public values and to revive workplace self-governance.

Cynthia Estlund is the Catherine A. Rein Professor of Law at the New York University School of Law.

"Cynthia Estlund has written a learned, ambitious and original book with a wide variety of important scholarly findings."—Julius Getman, The University of Texas at Austin

"Regoverning the Workplace is an important, thoroughly-researched, comprehensive, and thought-provoking book.  It has great scope and ambition, and offers valuable insights for scholars and policy-makers alike"—Catherine L. Fisk, Chancellor's Professor of Law, University of California, Irvine

"Estlund should be congratulated for writing an important, thought-provoking book that makes many contributions to the goal of workplace fairness."--Paul M. Secunda, Industrial and Labor Relations Review
ISBN: 9780300124507
Publication Date: February 23, 2010
320 pages, 6 1/8 x 9 1/4