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Brazilian strikes archives: statistical and qualitative analysis of unions conflicts from the 1970 to the 2000 decades

Grant number: 08/03561-5
Support type:Regular Research Grants
Duration: September 01, 2008 - February 29, 2012
Field of knowledge:Humanities - Political Science - Political Behavior
Principal Investigator:Eduardo Garuti Noronha
Grantee:Eduardo Garuti Noronha
Home Institution: Centro de Educação e Ciências Humanas (CECH). Universidade Federal de São Carlos (UFSCAR). São Carlos , SP, Brazil


This project aims to complement the SAG data-base (Strikes Follow-up System) developed and maintained by DIEESE and, in so doing, to consolidate as the most comprehensive source of information about labour conflicts in Brazil. The project results from an association between DIEESE and the Social Science Department at UFSCAR - Federal University of São Carlos.Brazil reaches the highest international level of strikes during the 1980's. The so called 'New-Unionism' started after a long motionless union's activity imposed by the military regimen. The rebirth of unions' actions took place in the ABC region throughout the long series of stoppages, started in 1978 and widespread all around the country thereafter. For being quite frequent and expressive until the beginning 1990's the strikes give rise to a deep concern among national and international scholars. However, the political and economic expressive changes during the 1990´s lead to a reduction of strikes as well as the academic interest in this subject. Among strikes data-bases created in the former decade only the one sponsored by DIEESE is still active. The others institutions researching the same subject (NEPP-UNICAMP and the Labour Ministry) stopped their researches at the beginning of the 1990's.Considering both the importance of strikes activities on the Brazilian recent history and the lack of information and analyses on this subject, this project has four main goals. First, to reform the SAG-DIEESE data base and complement it with the data available for years before its implementation - from 1978 to 1982. The second goal implies in collecting testimonies from union leaders who has passed by relevant experiences on union's activities. We also aim to collect information regarding strikes governmental legislation and the blue-print proposals to change legislation. The fourth, last and main one is to analyse the observed characteristics, trends and changes on the shapes of collective actions since the country's re-democratization to the current time. Different approaches will concur for the analysis. First an analytical history of the labour movement during the mentioned period followed by explanatory and comprehensive analysis which will be defined by an expressive number of experts. One of the main thesis to be tested sustain that periods of re-democratization, allied with the inclusion of new social segments into political and institutional agencies are the key elements to the definition of labour collective actions. It is also supposed that those social and institutional changes have been even more decisive to collective actions than economic issues. This project will be developed at DIEESE, in São Paulo, where the documentation is stored and where the DIEESE staff and others member of this research could manage it. The support for statistics and data analysis we are demanding to FAPESP aims to supply the dada-base system and to make possible collecting the union leader's testimony and researching the relevant documentation. As a counterpart DIEESE and UFSCAR are together allocating 15 researchers (with different backgrounds, academic formations, stage of carriers and levels of compromise with the research) with well defined tasks on the research. The DIEESE staff will be coordinated by de Francisco J. C. de Oliveira - Coordenador Geral de Pesquisas do DIEESE. The project coordinator, Eduardo G. Noronha, from the Social Science Department of UFSCar - Federal University of São Carlos - will encourage both and Social Science undergraduate students and researchers from the Political Science Master and Ph.D. Program at UFSCAR. (AU)

Articles published in Pesquisa FAPESP Magazine about the research grant:
When to stop is moving forward 
Cuando parar es ir adelante