Map the past, paste the map

What is Labour Conflicts about?

This site shows an overview of labor conflicts that have occurred on a global scale since 1927. It is the start of a new project initiated by the International Institute of Social History. This project intends to be the place where information is found on all different forms of labor conflicts since 1500.

Labour conflicts have occurred since Classical antiquity (everyone knows about the Spartacus slave revolt in 73-71 BC) and their incidence continues into the present. This fact by itself is a good reason for social scientists to study the phenomenon. Because labor disputes cause public unrest and economic losses there is also a reason for the world outside academia to investigate the occurrence. Let's not forget that labor conflicts are still an important feature of professional and political life. Although most workers and employers will probably never engage in such a dispute in their lifetime, the possibility (or threat) to vote with their feet is a part of negotiating labor conditions by unions and the rank and file. They have done so in the past and present.


The data now presented is collected by the ILO. They show:
- the number of strikes and lockouts combined
- the number of participants
- the number the working days lost because of these conflicts
An index relates these three indicators to the population number per country.


Apart from the international data we start with the visualization of data on a national scale. The first example is taken from the Dutch data collected by Sjaak van der Velden of the IISH and plotted by NLGIS.

Left off the maps on both the Global Labor Conflicts and Local Labor conflicts tabs, legends will appear. These indicate the distribution of the indicator values shown on the maps. The values are calculated by the website and hence may differ from map to map.