Academic collective bargaining, like all collective bargaining, presupposes conflicts between goals of the administration and the academic union. The represented parties on both sides, as well as the general public, typically perceive conflicts in collective bargaining in that way. However, both the administration’s and union’s bargaining teams must substantially resolve internal conflicts among the teams‘ own represented parties before the teams can hope to achieve an acceptable collective-bargaining agreement (i.e., a binding contract). After briefly addressing the very real strengths of academic unions in collective bargaining, we will at greater length explain the origin, nature, and usually imperfect resolution of conflicts arising within an academic union.

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